Letter to ACTION Buses. After two near misses in the space of one hour.

yoyoyo 24 August 2013 77
ACTION Buses,
GPO BOX 158,
Canberra City ACT 2601
Dear ACTION,
I don’t normally make a big fuss of things as I am quite a tolerant person, however the other day I had a couple run ins with ACTION BUS drivers. Both incidents occurred at the same intersection within 1 hour of each other. One face value they may seem trivial, but I think it demonstrates an underlying negative culture that ACTION Bus drivers have toward pedestrians.
Let me first set the scene of incident number 1. As you can see from attached photo I was wearing a highly visible bright yellow top, not for fashion reasons but because of having just stepped off the construction site I was working on as project manager of multimillion dollar residential development. Being on construction sites you quickly learn not to take your safety for granted and so keep your whits about you even with all the safety systems in place as required by OH&S laws. Its now a habit of mine which has saved me countless times when visiting overseas lesser developed countries.
The location of the first incident was as shown in the attached photo, is the eastern corner of Northbourne Ave and Allara st. leading into the civic bus interchange at around 12:30pm on Tuesday 20th August 2013. So you can imagine there would be a lot of pedestrians busily walking to get there lunch.
After checking the pedestrian crossing lights were green, I was just about to cross the intersection in a southward direction toward the Sydney building when as my foot began to touch the asphalt of the road an ACTION bus began turning the corner off Northbourne into Allara and with out hesitation continued on its way narrowly missing me. Had I been relying on the traffic lights to guide me through the intersection alone I would have ended up in the direct path of an on coming bus. Scoreboard would have read game over 1-0 to ACTION. However I did check both sides of the road before crossing and I did see in my peripheral vision the ACTION Bus. I didn’t notice if its indicators where being used, but I did stop myself in my tracks just in case the driver did choose to not make way for me, which he didn’t with out hesitation knowing that I had right of way on multiple fronts and that I was now standing on the side of the road looking to cross it.
Incident number 2 occurred at 1:10pm, at the same intersection on the same day but this time I was heading in a northward direction. Having lost all faith in the bus drivers competence with the basic road rules I thought I would check if it was an isolated case of diminishing IQ. Noticing that all lights at the intersection were red and there was no moving traffic only a stationary ACTION bus waiting at the front of the intersection to cross Northbourne in an westerly direction I began to cross the intersection knowing that it was dangerous to do so, but ultimately relying on my own senses and awareness to get me across safely and not the pedestrian lights which had so dismally failed me earlier on. As I was crossing the intersection the traffic lights for the Bus turned green, by which time I was in direct path, two metres away from the frontal impact zone of the bus. To my astonishment, even while wearing my bright yellow top , I noticed the bus lunge at me. Either the bus driver had not seen me, which I find hard to believe or he was blind as a bat. Intimidation also crossed my mind as the driver may have hoped I would scurry off like a scared rabbit. Either way in my mind I was ready for the drivers intimidation and I just froze, pulled out my right hand, palm facing forward towards the driver in a gesture to halt the drivers mad lust for pedestrian blood. Then I calmly continued on my way to the other side of the intersection by which time the driver of the ACTION bus had continued on his way. I did catch a glimpse of the bus number, something like a 457 was imprinted on the side, but i cant be sure.
From this short experience it can be shown that it is evidence of a sour culture festering with in the ACTION bus organisation. I felt intimidation, lack of empathy, disregard for the road rules from these drivers. I for one don’t feel comfortable in letting such people transport my children to school. There needs to be a shake up and the first heads to role should come from the top.
The day that public transport becomes fully automated (don’t be surprised if we see it in our own life times, its just around the corner) can’t come soon enough.
Please ACTION clean up your act, for the sake of the children at least who frequent your services.

[ED – Image not correctly attached. Please email in to images@the-riotact.com ]

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77 Responses to Letter to ACTION Buses. After two near misses in the space of one hour.
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Instant Mash Instant Mash 11:34 pm 28 Aug 13

It’s on my badge. Let’s leave it at that.

Bussie Bussie 1:01 am 28 Aug 13

Instant Mash said :

Bussie said :

Someone else who can’t read. Unless a bus driver has been involved in an actual accident they aren’t required to give their name to random members of the public. Given how many of my colleagues have been threatened and assaulted I sure as hell wouldn’t tell people my name. Maybe the “f off” isn’t coming straight away but if a polite “I don’t have to tell you my name” doesn’t get the message through…

Well if I can’t read, I’d better stick to writing.

Let me get this straight… If I was to get on a bus where the driver was driving very dangerously and erratically, but didn’t hit anything or anyone, and I asked for his details out of concern for myself and other passengers, I’d be politely told to bugger off? Would it be the same reaction if I asked for your license number? Should I just go straight to the police instead?

People don’t assault bus drivers because of their driving. If anything, it would be because of the attitude you show them afterwards. Sure, you get the bottom rung of society just looking for trouble but I digress. Even teenagers at fast food restaurants have name tags and I’ll bet they cop more abuse than you guys, just or not.

If you can’t take responsibility for your actions, you should not be driving a bus.

How many times do I have to say this. Bus drivers don’t have to tell you their name. If you want to complain about them the number of the bus or the route number and time is sufficient to identify them to management.

Taking responsibility for my actions doesn’t include giving my name to random idiots. When’s a good time for me to show up to your workplace and demand your name?

Aeek Aeek 9:06 pm 27 Aug 13

Instant Mash said :

Sure, you get the bottom rung of society just looking for trouble but I digress. Even teenagers at fast food restaurants have name tags and I’ll bet they cop more abuse than you guys, just or not.

If you can’t take responsibility for your actions, you should not be driving a bus.

Maybe the teenagers shouldn’t/don’t have badges displaying their full name?
Having random crazies being able to google you, or check white pages is not on.
Fine if your name is John Smith, but if you have a unique combination like I do that’s an unacceptable personal security risk.

Buses really should display unique ID numbers inside and out. (Hope they do, I wouldn’t know as I’d rather ride)

TheBusDriver TheBusDriver 8:41 pm 27 Aug 13

Instant Mash said :

…….

People don’t assault bus drivers because of their driving. …

If you can’t take responsibility for your actions, you should not be driving a bus.

Actually, bus drivers don’t assault passengers. But lots of bus drivers have been assaulted by passengers. I have had people throw bricks and fruit at buses I have driven. A fellow driver was assaulted by three tourists not so long ago because they thought the bus was going direct to Parliament house and became pissed off when it didn’t. They put him in hospital because basically he should have read their minds. Then there are the passengers who say “I’m going to such and such” but who don’t ask for you to let them know when you get there and abuse you for not telling them. Then there are the drunks and drug addicts who try to rob you for the fare takings. There are students who get into fights with each other and who will either take a swing at you or pull a knife on you if you interfere or threaten to sue if you either lay a hand on them to stop them or threaten to sue you if you don’t do anything.

Compared to them I have no concerns about passengers who are lost and apologise for pushing the button at the wrong stop for the fifth time in a row. Or the passenger that demands you ‘hurry up’ because according to them you’re 2 minutes late by their watch. Or the ones that complain about driving through the suburbs like I’m the one who sets the routes. Even though I have to clean up afterwards I don’t mind the ones who spew up, pee or poop on the bus or lose their food or groceries everywhere. Because I’d rather have that than a passenger pull a knife on me which has happened a few times. Or some idiot try to hijack the bus and then threaten to sue after I swerved and they fell against the doors as a result.
You know, despite that, I’ve never abused a passenger, never even been overly impolite. I’ve even had a few letters of commendation.

So when I see crap like this from people who could not handle a week with the sort of rubbish we have to put up with as bus drivers I just laugh and think you don’t know how lucky you have it. Yeah, have fun in your fairy world. Just remember, in the real world it is the passengers who attack drivers. If drivers could report passengers for doing the wrong thing there’d be a lot of passengers getting reported.

Until you can do this job for a while, how about you just keep your ill informed clap trp rubbish to yourself? Because no bus driver would want some one like you as a passenger, not even you would if you were doing this job. You’d look at yourself and think “who the hell was I kidding?”.

bigred bigred 8:40 pm 27 Aug 13

Too many words here. It is seriously doing my head in. I think it is all about how life is cheap as far as ACTION drivers go. Well a substantial proportion anyway.

TheBusDriver TheBusDriver 8:18 pm 27 Aug 13

JC said :

TheBusDriver said :

I understand thyat yoiu have impled we bus drivers do secretly want to run you all over, lose our jobs and our livelyhood. Quite clearly you are a perfect driver capable of stopping a 10-21 tonne bus on a penny, of avoiding cars that turn at random without indicating and of avoiding pedestrians like yourself that ignore road rules and step out onto the road at random. I suggest you apply for your medium rigid driver’s licence, and when you finally pass, that you get behind the wheel of such a bus and see how far you get before you hit something or some one. Oh, and I want to see those penny stops that you seem to think we’re all capable of, because yes, if you insist it can be done, you must be capable of doing it yourself right?
Now I’m just a humble bus driver who’s never had a complaint, and who has only ever had two acidents in many years, neither of which were my fault (I wasn’t even in the parked bus for one of them) so yeah, what would I know?

If a bus needs to stop on a penny then quite clearly the driver is not leaving a safe distance, or in the case of pedestrians in areas like the City interchange paying attention to the surroundings and driving to the conditions (though yes many car drivers are guilty of this, especially in the 40km/h bits the government has now created in Civic and elsewhere)

Now as you are not an Action driver, you won’t be offended when I say this is something many drivers working for Action are guilty of, especially when they try to overtake heading into a merge, then have the gall to come onto boards like this and say you should have given way to them. A good case in point for this behaviour is Barry Drive Belconnen bound near the ANU. If I had a dollar for every bus that has come from behind, going overtaken then need to brake because the traffic past the merge is going slow I would be rich. The way to merge of course is to judge the speed of the traffic past the merge, adjust your speed on approach to match and attempt to zipper merge with traffic in other lanes. Now yeah know some will disagree, though those that do are generally what causes the traffic to be so slow past the merge, because they speed on through then have to brake heavily, which then creates the elestic band effect, rather than approach at the speed people are doing beyond the merge.

Anyway end rant.

Wow, you’re bloody brilliant at twisting people’s words and putting people down. You must have taken lessons on how to do it eh? Or maybe you’re a politician? Or maybe you’re a delivery driver out for revenge? Or maybe you just can’t bloody read?

Get back under your bridge http://ihgritch.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/troll.jpg

c_c™ c_c™ 6:36 pm 27 Aug 13

Bussie said :

Someone else who can’t read. Unless a bus driver has been involved in an actual accident they aren’t required to give their name to random members of the public. Given how many of my colleagues have been threatened and assaulted I sure as hell wouldn’t tell people my name. Maybe the “f off” isn’t coming straight away but if a polite “I don’t have to tell you my name” doesn’t get the message through…

You’re entirely right, shouldn’t get into a situation of direct confrontation.

Much better to call the directorate and lodge a formal complaint against the driver.

Instant Mash Instant Mash 6:07 pm 27 Aug 13

Bussie said :

Someone else who can’t read. Unless a bus driver has been involved in an actual accident they aren’t required to give their name to random members of the public. Given how many of my colleagues have been threatened and assaulted I sure as hell wouldn’t tell people my name. Maybe the “f off” isn’t coming straight away but if a polite “I don’t have to tell you my name” doesn’t get the message through…

Well if I can’t read, I’d better stick to writing.

Let me get this straight… If I was to get on a bus where the driver was driving very dangerously and erratically, but didn’t hit anything or anyone, and I asked for his details out of concern for myself and other passengers, I’d be politely told to bugger off? Would it be the same reaction if I asked for your license number? Should I just go straight to the police instead?

People don’t assault bus drivers because of their driving. If anything, it would be because of the attitude you show them afterwards. Sure, you get the bottom rung of society just looking for trouble but I digress. Even teenagers at fast food restaurants have name tags and I’ll bet they cop more abuse than you guys, just or not.

If you can’t take responsibility for your actions, you should not be driving a bus.

Bussie Bussie 8:43 am 27 Aug 13

Instant Mash said :

Honestly, Bussie, the impression you’re giving me here is that you:

A) Have sub-par people skills. Especially for a Government bus driver who deals with the public constantly.

And B) You lack accountability. If a bus driver had concerned me enough to need to ask for their details, I’d certainly ask for their name. And if I instead copped some of your ‘F off’ attitude, I’d be making damn certain you don’t stick around in that job for much longer.

People expect a certain level of decorum. If you can’t keep up, go work in a kitchen or a construction site, away from the public.

Someone else who can’t read. Unless a bus driver has been involved in an actual accident they aren’t required to give their name to random members of the public. Given how many of my colleagues have been threatened and assaulted I sure as hell wouldn’t tell people my name. Maybe the “f off” isn’t coming straight away but if a polite “I don’t have to tell you my name” doesn’t get the message through…

Henry82 Henry82 5:37 am 27 Aug 13

TLDR: Was jaywalking and nearly got hit by a bus, therefore ACTION’s fault.

yep, i can see the logic there /s

Very Busy Very Busy 11:06 pm 26 Aug 13

yoyoyo said :

Woody Mann-Caruso said :

I like the part where you point out you just stepped off a ‘multimillion dollar residential development’ like it has something to do with anything.

“Do you think it will hurt if I step in front of a moving bus?”
“I think so, yes.”
“Look, no offence, but I think I’ll get a second opinion from somebody who works on a multimillion dollar residential development.”

OP here, Just putting my job experieince in context. Big construction site versus cushy office environment does affect ones awareness. so yes my opinion should matter before you find a brick on your head.

Oh thanks for that, By the way, have you finished that pergola yet?

JC JC 10:50 pm 26 Aug 13

TheBusDriver said :

I understand thyat yoiu have impled we bus drivers do secretly want to run you all over, lose our jobs and our livelyhood. Quite clearly you are a perfect driver capable of stopping a 10-21 tonne bus on a penny, of avoiding cars that turn at random without indicating and of avoiding pedestrians like yourself that ignore road rules and step out onto the road at random. I suggest you apply for your medium rigid driver’s licence, and when you finally pass, that you get behind the wheel of such a bus and see how far you get before you hit something or some one. Oh, and I want to see those penny stops that you seem to think we’re all capable of, because yes, if you insist it can be done, you must be capable of doing it yourself right?
Now I’m just a humble bus driver who’s never had a complaint, and who has only ever had two acidents in many years, neither of which were my fault (I wasn’t even in the parked bus for one of them) so yeah, what would I know?

If a bus needs to stop on a penny then quite clearly the driver is not leaving a safe distance, or in the case of pedestrians in areas like the City interchange paying attention to the surroundings and driving to the conditions (though yes many car drivers are guilty of this, especially in the 40km/h bits the government has now created in Civic and elsewhere)

Now as you are not an Action driver, you won’t be offended when I say this is something many drivers working for Action are guilty of, especially when they try to overtake heading into a merge, then have the gall to come onto boards like this and say you should have given way to them. A good case in point for this behaviour is Barry Drive Belconnen bound near the ANU. If I had a dollar for every bus that has come from behind, going overtaken then need to brake because the traffic past the merge is going slow I would be rich. The way to merge of course is to judge the speed of the traffic past the merge, adjust your speed on approach to match and attempt to zipper merge with traffic in other lanes. Now yeah know some will disagree, though those that do are generally what causes the traffic to be so slow past the merge, because they speed on through then have to brake heavily, which then creates the elestic band effect, rather than approach at the speed people are doing beyond the merge.

Anyway end rant.

JC JC 10:44 pm 26 Aug 13

TheBusDriver said :

JC said :

You weren’t driving bus 909 this morning were you. God I hope so, if so consider yourself reported…

You wen’t being a right asshole today were you? I guess you were. If so, consider yourself to be reported.

See the attitude you just showed me is exactly what the other posters are on about. Someone with an attitude like yours is really unfit to be driving a public bus.

Oh I wasn’t joking about reporting the driver of bus 909 (quite funny too your reply was posted at 9:09), sent the complaint this afternoon. The moron driving that bus this morning at 8am came within about 1m of cleaning up the car in front of me, with an overtaking manoeuvre on Northborne Ave that would have been impressive in a sports car, but dam scary to see it being done by an Action bus. About half a flash of indicator and over to the middle lane right in the middle of the intersection with Macarthur Ave, and as I said just missing the car in front of me my a metre and causing him to brake heavily to avoid hitting him and me to avoid hitting the car in front of me.

The reason as mentioned was to overtake a bus at the next stop. I bus might I add who had his indicator on to start moving, something I could see from 100m in a var, so now Mr 909 had to speed up to overtake as he needed to stop at the next stop. Now I believe somewhere in the rules it does mention if changing lanes you can only do if it is safe to do so, it certainly wasn’t safe what he did. I also think, but don’t quote me on this your not meant to change lanes in an intersection too. As for the passengers I bet they were hanging on for dear life.

TheBusDriver TheBusDriver 9:09 pm 26 Aug 13

JC said :

You weren’t driving bus 909 this morning were you. God I hope so, if so consider yourself reported…

You wen’t being a right asshole today were you? I guess you were. If so, consider yourself to be reported.

TheBusDriver TheBusDriver 8:59 pm 26 Aug 13

I am so glad that I don’t work for Action busses because it means I can write this;
Dear Yoyoyo. I feel great pain for your recent brush with buses. It was wonderful to observe that in your many road crossings, some of which I assume must have been illegal such as the second one you mention, that you have only been almost run over twice. I think that is an excellent track record for Canberra considering the high number of people who step out on the roads compleatly at random,especially around the Civic Interchange.
I understand thyat yoiu have impled we bus drivers do secretly want to run you all over, lose our jobs and our livelyhood. Quite clearly you are a perfect driver capable of stopping a 10-21 tonne bus on a penny, of avoiding cars that turn at random without indicating and of avoiding pedestrians like yourself that ignore road rules and step out onto the road at random. I suggest you apply for your medium rigid driver’s licence, and when you finally pass, that you get behind the wheel of such a bus and see how far you get before you hit something or some one. Oh, and I want to see those penny stops that you seem to think we’re all capable of, because yes, if you insist it can be done, you must be capable of doing it yourself right?
Now I’m just a humble bus driver who’s never had a complaint, and who has only ever had two acidents in many years, neither of which were my fault (I wasn’t even in the parked bus for one of them) so yeah, what would I know?

c_c™ c_c™ 6:03 pm 26 Aug 13

Paul0075 said :

Bus drivers are human and therefore prone to error, as we all are.

You’re confusing error, with mistake. A mistake is unintentional, an error can be intentional, and for many bus drivers their errors are very intentional. One articulated bus blasted through a roundabout in Tuggeranong, forcing two lanes of traffic to stop on the round about and almost tail ending the vehicle in front of him (who barely had time to go, so the bus definitely shouldn’t have).
I tailed the bus to the exchange, he arrived at 4.45, right on time according to the schedule for his route number. Not hard to see why he was taking such risks.

JC JC 5:55 pm 26 Aug 13

Bussie said :

Have someone read my post slowly to you and maybe you’ll understand what I was saying. The f off would be to someone demanding my name. I’m not required to tell people and I sure as hell wouldn’t.

You weren’t driving bus 909 this morning were you. God I hope so, if so consider yourself reported…

JC JC 5:53 pm 26 Aug 13

ML-585 said :

yoyoyo said :

Pedestrians by law have right of way on all streets even if jaywalking. Drivers in general don’t seem to know that and think they have the moral high ground. Which leads to false comments as quoted above.

Do they? As JC has pointed out, the rules applying to turning at traffic lights state that a driver must give way to pedestrians on the road being turned into, but there is no requirement to give way to pedestrians if you are not turning. (Quite often an impatient pedestrian runs across a red light just as the oncoming traffic gets a green light.)

However Rule 232 states that pedestrians MUST NOT start to cross until the pedestrian lights change to green. Therefore in my opinion*, the give way to pedestrians rule only applies where said pedestrian has crossed the road legally (with a green light). I don’t give way to pedestrians who cross at a red light. Same as I don’t give way to cyclists riding across a pedestrian crossing. Consider this a warning.

(* opinion not supported by any actual research or legal ruling.)

Half right, just because someone else has done something wrong, doesn’t mean you can run them over. Case in point is the OP’s 2nd complain. Whilst it is true he was doing something wrong, specifically crossing the road against a red, when the lights for the bus went green the bus driver did not have the right to move. As green means go if it is safe to do so. Clearly someone in front of the bus is not a safe situation, so the bus had no right to move.

Also a reminder for about the 3rd time, the rules about a vehicle turning having to give way to pedestrians ALSO apply to intersections controlled by stop signs and giveway signs. Rule 232 only applies to the pedestrian at intersections controlled by lights. So basically if you a pedestrian crossing at lights you should only cross when green, but no lights you can cross but need to give way to vehicles who are not turning, but any turning vehicle must give way to you. Now buggered if I am going to ‘force’ this rule if I am out walking, because I know what will happen. Same too with roundabouts, whilst the law is giveway to anyone already on the roundabout if a vehicle is approaching me fast from my right and not already on I will be giving way to them even though I don’t have to, becuase I know that 99% of drivers won’t be giving way to me even if I am first on. End result crash.

DrKoresh DrKoresh 2:21 pm 26 Aug 13

Thumper said :

Bussie said :

Have someone read my post slowly to you and maybe you’ll understand what I was saying. The f off would be to someone demanding my name. I’m not required to tell people and I sure as hell wouldn’t.

I did read your post and you quite clearly said that you would tell a member of the public to “f*** off”.

Seriously, it is that clear.

I wonder if ACTION are taking note?

****ing Hell Thumper, get the **** over it for ****’s sake.

bundah bundah 2:19 pm 26 Aug 13

DrKoresh said :

Speaking of, so the plod picked-up a Harrison man in relation to the hit’n’run last week or whenever, has there been any developments since then?

Aside from this not yet

http://the-riotact.com/harrison-man-summonsed-over-braddon-hit-and-run/112899

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