Tag Archives: Transportation and Logistics

Public Transport: where did it all go wrong?

Hopping on the bus to work the other day cost me a whopping £3.20. Fares these days are rising like unemployment, that’s stupidly high for anyone that didn’t grasp my poor attempt at a political gibe.

Standard class interior of National Express Ea...

Wishful thinking!

Now I know we are in a recession, which means we have to pay more for absolutely everything, which I don’t really understand, but we’ll skip over that as it’s the first of many. So with this philosophy it is expected that one should pay more for bus fares, naturally. It’s not like the recession means we have less dollar in our back pocket at all, grab away government it’s all good here, no worries we got your back!

Anyway, with all this complaining I am starting to sound far too similar to someone well matured in the fine wine that is life. And so before I bore you all into thinking that public transport isn’t quite as bad as this article I return to our subject matter: public transport. You find yourself sitting on a packed, rickety old bus smelling something like a cesspit that’s been flooded by Stella, wondering, where did it all go wrong? It really did seem like a good idea at the time I’m sure, but public transport is acting like a smelly child that just won’t go to the toilet. It just keeps hanging around, continually acquiring a greater hatred from it’s uses. You have to question is it just us or is public transport less than desirable on the continent as well? No don’t be silly, everything is always more desirable on the continent. I would pay £3.20 just to watch a continental bus, oh don’t ask!

Unfortunately you’re not off the hook yet, the rant continues, I know I amaze myself at times. It is deeper than just a poorly designed system that is the real problem. Public transport is the bane of commuters lives; Buses are delayed, trains are overpacked and overpriced and flying is way to extravagant. Attempting a trip into town at peak times has become a folly ambition, let alone commuting into London everyday, it’s pretty much perceived as suicide, talk about staring death in the face. Pubic transport just has that stigma about it nowadays, as a nation we are not proud of the national service, we even sold most of it. We approach it with an air of suspicion and a great wodge of lack of faith that it will succeed in its core mission to get us to our destination. But why and how did this travesty occur, where did it all go wrong?

Sadly, I don’t have the solution, because well I’m not a politician (my second attempt at a political gibe). However, like an annoying teacher’s pet I have introduced the question secretly so I can have a crack at it. Here goes, hold on to your expenses (third, and admittedly more horrific, political gibe if it can even be graced with that title). As I mentioned early we have no real faith in our public service and this could be the crux of the problem. Society needs to stop dodging the blame and take a long hard look at itself in the mirror, metaphorical of course, government could never commission a mirror to be made that big, silly idea really. Our lack of faith has physicalised into a lack of respect through mistreating our transport something chronic, the amount of rubbish you find on a bus has caused me to accidentally catch a ride on a dustbin truck by mistake. I joke. The poor treatment we dish out is reflected in the service we receive and in reality we probably get a good deal for our lack of care. So does the issue really lie with us?

Can we change our attitude and take a little pride in the service that has changed the world and moved forward our society in many ways; scientific, industrial, and economic to name a few. With a new mindset and respect we can impact the service we receive, so really we are our own downfall, but, only if we don’t take any care.

But I mean, what do I know I’m only a student really.

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Buses-Can’t live with em’, can’t live without em’


English: Bus stop on Whytecliffe Road South, P...

A rarity

Buses, where do I start! As the saying goes ‘just like buses, when you want them they never turn up and when you don’t they all come at once’. Personally I think that’s a bit harsh, I mean when do buses ever turn up? Contrary to your initial thoughts I do not have a personal vendetta against buses, well not quite anyway. Having had the joy of using buses for nearly everyday for two years travelling to college it has allowed me to see the brutish machines in a different light. And not a good one at that.

One of the main reasons I strongly dislike buses is that, to be frank they are a safety hazard. The amount of times I have unwillingly charged down the aisle of the bus smashing into flailing shopping bags as I attempted to gracefully exit my ride is unbelievable. I would dread the arrival of my stop and the inevitable fate that followed.

One particularly bumpy and unenjoyable journey was brought to an end with, well I thought the drama had ended for the day, oh how wrong I was, the ringing of the big red button signed ‘stop’. It’s ironic that it should contain such a falsity. I mean it wouldn’t be wrong to believe that a bus would stop when you dutifully press the ‘stop’ button. Oh how wrong I was again! Stopping? ‘No, not today’ was the new motto of my good driver, he simply was in a rush to get home and just one stop would slow him down immeasurably.


You'd be amazed at how many people still wait ...

The most useless bus stop...ever.

As I said I rang the bell and started off on my treacherous expedition down the bus as I had made the schoolboy error of sitting at the back-what can I say I’m….cool? Well to cut a long story short and to keep some of my shattered dignity in tact, I ended up bulldozing my way past an old couple who let’s just say weren’t too please, and involuntarily sprang into a near sprint finished to get to the door. Health and Safety eat your heart out I didn’t even hold any support polls! Cool and reckless, what can I say I’m quite a catch.

I had at this point broken into quite a sweat-nerves and running never did do anything for my sweat glands. Not only this, when I went to thank the bus driver as any polite person would do, even though I was not all that thankful for embarrassing me and emergency braking into my stop, my voice scraped out in a tone similar to death itself and then continued to leap into a high pitch screech. The only way I can explain this is that I had neglected the use of my voice for the duration of the journey and it had decided it would play a practical joke on me. I genuinely flinched at my own voice and my shock along with the rest of the bus was evident. None of us expected such a strange sound to omit my body. My voice had not only sounded like it had totally deserted me but also returned to soprano heights which really did nothing for my image as a 18 year old.

At this point I thought no more could go wrong, hmm yeah well. Let’s just say that when the bus doors opened I was so nervous to get off that I jumped the gun and ended up being literally jammed in-between the doors. The automatic doors clamped to each side of my body leaving me in a state of flux! I was left hangin’ literally. Panic! I could do nothing while even the bus driver looked with sight unease. After a good minute or so as the population of the bus watched in wonder and a sigh of relief as this disaster hadn’t happened to them, I was finally let down from the clamped doors and could at last gracefully exit the bus.

Head down, arms pumping I walked off pretending the last half an hour had never happened. Excuse me if I hate buses, I feel I have my reasons.


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