Thumbs up for passive restraint system
Meet “Andrea”, my first customer to try out the new passive restraint system on RapidRide B. Ok, she’s not trying it out, she’s a pro and was happy to see I had a bus with this system on board. She was quick to tell me how she prefers the freedom of this system and feels quite safe. Another customer boarded a few weeks ago excited to use the passive restraint system. Unfortunately I had drawn coach 6001 that day, so she was disappointed. (6000 and 6001, both at East base currently, are from the “A” line and are not equipped with the passive restraint system) It’s hardly a scientific survey but so far 2 out of 2 mobility device users that I’ve spoken with prefer the passive restraint system.
From my perspective here are a couple of potential issues: “Andrea” became a little lost since she was facing backwards and couldn’t see where the bus was going. At one point she needed to ask me whether we were at her stop or not (we had one more to go). Additionally, I find that many people like to sit on the fold down chairs around the two tie-down areas up front, which can create a bit of congestion. I flip up the seats around the passive restraint system each trip to encourage folks to sit elsewhere. (I leave the seats around the forward facing tie-down area down). Additionally, it can be difficult to maneuver out of this position if people are sitting in the seats between the front and middle doors. (Making these seats even less comfortable than they already are might help 🙂 Either way, it’s an improvement over the old system and so far folks seem to like it.
By the way, “Andrea” was quick to volunteer her name so I took that as tacit permission to use her name. Then again, maybe it’s a fake name since it’s not every day your bus driver asks if he can take a picture of you for his blog. I didn’t get the “you’re making me feel creepy” vibe from “Andrea” so hopefully she was Ok with all of this.