No more worries about buses skipping stops in Gyeonggi Province: Pilot run of “Bus Stop Bell” starts November 30
Createdd 2020-11-25 Hit 153
○ Gyeonggi Province to conduct pilot run of Korea’s first “Bus Stop Bell” service through G-Bus app
– Passengers can send bus stop alerts on their smartphone; requests will be sent automatically to bus drivers
– Passengers can report buses that skip bus stops even after drivers have been alerted
○ Improved app interface for greater accessibility and additional features including directions and reviews
Buses sometimes skip stops and leave passengers waiting for the next bus. However, starting this month, such inconveniences will be eradicated in Gyeonggi Province.
For the first time in Korea, Gyeonggi Province will implement the “Bus Stop Bell” service to prevent buses from skipping bus stops. Pilot operation of the service will begin on November 30 via the G-Bus app.
Similar to yet unlike the bells that passengers use on buses to signal their intention to get off at upcoming bus stops, Bus Stop Bell works by notifying bus drivers of passengers who intend to board at certain bus stops.
A passenger who arrives at a bus stop can open the G-Bus smartphone app and engage the Bus Stop Bell after selecting the bus they wish to take. A device installed by the bus driver’s seat then audibly and graphically notifies the bus driver that a passenger is waiting for the bus at a certain bus stop.
For enhanced reliability of information, the notification can only be sent when a passenger is within 30 meters of the desired bus stop. Also, considering the time delay that may occur before the driver is alerted, the notification should be sent when the bus is least one stop away from the desired stop.
Only one notification can be sent at a time. If a passenger wishes to take another bus after having sent a notification, they must cancel the first notification before sending the second.
A reporting system will also be incorporated into the app. If a bus driver ignores a notification and skips a bus stop, the app will automatically record the time and location of the occurrence as well as the bus route and bus number.
Gyeonggi Province will apply this reporting system in the evaluation of bus management and services with the aim of increasing bus driver and company awareness so as to ensure better service.
The user interface of the G-Bus app has also been greatly improved. The app has been made accessible with consideration given to public transit users who may experience inconveniences, such as the visually impaired, with the text being adjustable in 3 different sizes. Directional and bus review functions have also been added.
Gyeonggi Province will conduct a pilot run of the Bus Stop Bell service on ten bus routes that have seen some of the most frequent reports of skipped bus stops. Another pilot round will take place this February on 89 routes to identify more areas for improvement before the service is finally launched on all routes starting in March.
After monitoring performance, the service will be expanded gradually through affiliation with private bus apps with large user pools (e.g., Kakao Bus, NAVER Map, etc.).
Gyeonggi Province expects that the Bus Stop Bell service will drastically reduce public inconvenience stemming from skipped bus stops. It is seen as being especially beneficial for bus stops in the suburbs and at night when there are fewer passengers.
Gyeonggi Province Transportation Bureau Director General Park Tae-hwan said, “The Bus Stop Bell service will encourage bus companies to voluntarily refrain from skipping stops and ensure a safer environment for passengers getting on and off buses. We will work on stabilizing this smart system for passengers to alert bus drivers in advance, and for bus drivers to be notified in advance.”