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Bus tow? No problem!

By johnboy 21 July 2011 29

As seen in Civic this afternoon.

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29 Responses to
Bus tow? No problem!
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ML-585 3:05 pm 27 Jul 11

screaming banshee said :

Look to be honest with no facts and figures in front of me I would say once per week would be about the point you would look to purchase an asset such as this, but as I said I’d also be looking into what is driving this constant need for tows.

I’d still love to know how many tows a week they are doing.

If you want to know how many tows are being done per week, I suggest you sit outside Belconnen Depot on Cohen Street and count how many times the tow truck goes out.

But I think it’s fairly safe to say that it is used more often than once a week, on average.

Bussie 10:31 am 27 Jul 11

screaming banshee said :

Look to be honest with no facts and figures in front of me I would say once per week would be about the point you would look to purchase an asset such as this, but as I said I’d also be looking into what is driving this constant need for tows.

I’d still love to know how many tows a week they are doing.

This is where your ignorance is getting the better of you. You have no idea if this “constant need for tows” is normal or not. ACTION has about 400 buses, some of them over 20 years old, so with our guess of one tow per week that’s only once every 8 years per bus.

Sir Pompously 6:55 pm 26 Jul 11

Towing is a rare event that happens only when the bus cannot be fixed on the road (You would probably see it out once or twice a week). The tow truck I believe was a gift to ACTION from MACK for their large purchase of Renault PR100.2 vehicles, which are in fact a reliable unit (It is rumoured that MACK could not move that line of truck, they had a surplus!). It replaced an older unit (probably a Leyland, I have only seen pictures of the rear of the old truck), and I am fairly certain only a few mechanics are trained to drive it but they are not employed for the sole purpose of doing so. I have seen other Government bus operators that in fact own their own tow trucks, as private companies charge through the nose for the hire of one and cannot always be there to tow the vehicle ASAP. The tow truck is also used as a mobile work station, helping the breakdown truck by lifting a vehicle when it is being fixed on the spot and access is required underneath the bus. You will find most buses with problems will either never leave the depot, or will be placed “on the bricks” as soon as it is returned and the problem rectified before its next in service run (Go to Belconnen Depot on a Saturday morning and see the line up of vehicles waiting for problems to be fixed, by monday peak only the worst cases will be left!).

I can see what screaming banshee is trying to say, however the problem with mechanical beings is that no matter how much you maintain them to the best standards, you will always have a problem. So the best way to cover your bases is to have a tow truck handy, when a problem that just cannot be fixed out on the road arises!

screaming banshee 12:31 pm 26 Jul 11

Funky Claude said :

I have been told that the tow truck was given to Action by Mack…

That’s got to give you confidence in the negotiation procedure doesn’t it –

“OK, here’s the contract for the 100 buses, and if you look to appendix A you’ll see that we’ve thrown in a tow truck free of charge”

“Gee, our fleet needs a tow every now and then but we haven’t seen a tow truck as a requirement previously”

“Ahh, well you’ve got a fleet of Mack vehicles now and its just something we here at Mack like to do for our very special customers. You .umm.. dont want to be caught out, y’know”

It’d be like buying a new car with an engine and gearbox rebuild kit thrown in for free.

Look to be honest with no facts and figures in front of me I would say once per week would be about the point you would look to purchase an asset such as this, but as I said I’d also be looking into what is driving this constant need for tows.

I’d still love to know how many tows a week they are doing.

Bussie 10:37 am 26 Jul 11

Whoops forgot to finish my comment, was going to say that as well as the breakdown truck they will occasionally send out a mechanic in a ute with whatever tools and parts they think are needed to fix a minor fault.

Also if a gas bus runs out of fuel that necessitates a tow.

Bussie 10:35 am 26 Jul 11

screaming banshee said :

No, I am not an expert on bus maintenance per se, but I am well and truly across the benefits and methods of maintaining ‘equipment’, I am also across the benefits of leasing/hiring as opposed to owning

OK then. I accept that if there was only one bus tow a year required it would be foolish for ACTION to own a tow truck. How about you accept that with say one tow a week required it’s not so foolish. Also accept that the amount of preventive maintennance required to get to that one tow a year (yearly engine rebuilds? a giant x-ray machine like the airlines have to look for metal fatigue?) is probably not worth the effort. There are also buses damaged in accidents which ACTION has little control over.

Each depot has a breakdown truck. They will also occasionally send
Seeing as you don’t

Funky Claude 5:07 pm 25 Jul 11

I have been told that the tow truck was given to Action by Mack, perhaps having been included in a tender package free of charge as sweetener. Given that the unit is a Mack and the comparably aged buses are Mack/Renault it seems possible.

damien haas 4:30 pm 25 Jul 11

ACTION also have a breakdown vehicle which is like an NRMA tuck for buses. It can perform roadside repairs and get a bus mobile again, when the tow truck isnt required.

The towtruck lives at the Belconnen depot.

Keijidosha 2:16 pm 25 Jul 11

screaming banshee said :

Crash the tow-truck into the giant penis, two problems solved but I’m guessing the wrong one will be re-erected.

Here’s something I think we can all agree on.

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