Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What we have here, is a failure to communicate

Dear CJ,

I’m not sure if you’re as passionate on your site about GO buses as you are about trains (Absolutely I am!).

I’ve only just become a dedicated reader this morning (Love at first site, huh?) but there is one thing that irks me about some drivers that I wanted to share, and I just happen to have an example from the other day (Aug 23rd @ 5:06PM).

So we’re traveling merrily along the 401 from Yorkdale on our way to the 400, when the driver begins to slow down. Then he stops. Now, I figured there was traffic or something, but as I shake myself out of my Android Phone induced oblivion, I realize we’re at the side of the road. By this time, everyone else is looking around at everyone else trying to get some semblance of “Oh, we’ve stopped, and its ok” which of course, no one is getting.

All of a sudden, the bus turns off. The door opens. The driver gets up. The driver exits the bus. The door closes. Silence. Now there is more looking around. I’ve come to understand this is actually everyone trying to figure out if anyone else is panicking, and whether or not they should also be panicking, since perhaps they don’t understand how panicky this situation should actually be.

Fortunately, no one is freaking out, so the silence continues (minus the uncomfortable seat-shifting that comes with uncomfortable non-obviously-panicky silences). The driver then walks around the bus a few times, opens the door, gets back in and we start our journey again.

Now, I’m glad that he apparently found that nothing was wrong, and I’m glad that I got home with minimal delay, but my biggest problem is very obviously that all of this occurred without as much as a glance back to the passengers. No smile. No announcement with a quick explanation. Not even so much as mouthing the words “False Alarm”.

Seriously, when did it happen that GO Transit, and/or the drivers themselves, decided that we don’t need to know what’s going on? Do they even realize we’re there anymore, or is it that once they check our ticket (if they check our ticket), their job is just to get the bus from point A to point B?

P.S. Thanks for providing a forum for me to be able to vent, if not on the site itself, at least in your Inbox!

Jason B.
Daily GO Commuter from Newmarket to Meadowvale for the last 5 years.

I don't have an answer for you Jason but I do have some illustrations to help you identify the only situation - just one - when your driver has to tell you why he's pulled over, gotten out and locked you all in the bus. Can you guess which one it is?

Jackie Chan

Inflatable Gorilla



lswgirl13 said...

HAHAHA!!! I thought Jason was gonna say that the driver got out to pee.
Interesting though, just what is the driver's responsibility to his/her passengers? Thoughts of that horrible Greyhound killing are in my head.

Squiggles said...

I thought the driver had to pee too!

My guess is that the only acceptable reason why he should have done that was Jackie Chan. I mean, who doesn't run from a Martial Artist who could kick your butt with a look?

TomW said...

Possible reason... last time I got a bus at Ajax, the drievr to reset the bus's electronics in order to clear a fault light. This can only be done from outside the bus with the engine off. Presuambly, if it's a real fault, the light comes back on after the electronics are reset.
(The electronics in question include things like engine managment and fire detection)

go-dude said...

Did u make those CJ?! If you did, they are very good!

I'd like to think I'd pull over if Jackie Chan was on my bus. Very funny. The gorilla was a close 2nd.

Jason B. said...

Those pictures are 3 kinds of awesome. Thanks for posting my story, and thanks for illustrating it perfectly :)

kary said...

I can't tell you how many times a TTC bus driver stops the Bay bus at Bloor, gets out, heads across the street and disappears, returns in 4-5 minutes with no word to any of us. It is extremely annoying.

Anonymous said...

@Jason - do you recall the fabled 27F Friday pee story well enough to tell it or should I?