Complaints on irregular RapidKL bus services

Following complaints on irregular RapidKL bus services and inaccurate information display, Tricia Lim finds that the situation is only prevalent at the Asia Jaya station while buses at other stations adhere to the schedule.

FOR many without their own transport, using public transport, like the bus, is the norm and I am one of them too.

As an intern at The Star, I have assignments daily and rely on the bus to get to my destinations but this has become quite a challenge.

It is because the buses hardly arrive on time and the Passenger Information System (PIS), commonly known as the electronic signboards, are of no use as the arrival times are inaccurate.

Many of us waiting at the Asia Jaya LRT station are often frustrated over the delay and do not rely on the electronic signboards’ “estimated time of arrival” anymore.

Somedays, when I am tired of waiting and decide to get a taxi, the bus will arrive and within minutes, it will be full and leave the station.

However, the most frustrating fact is when the electronic signboards flash the sign “Tiba” which means arrived but there is no bus in sight, even after 30 minutes sometimes.

Student Amanda Soo, 21, said it was frustrating for commuters when the buses do not keep to the schedule stated on the electronic board.

“Once, I waited up to an hour for the bus at the Asia Jaya LRT station but it did not appear, so I had no choice but to take the taxi instead,” said Soo.

Thankfully, some of the people I spoke to at other bus stops, such as in Bangsar, Sunway Pyramid and Wangsa Maju, are not facing similar situations.

Nagesvary Lechumanan, 37, who moved from Shah Alam to Kuala Lumpur two months ago because of work, said waiting for the bus in Bangsar to get around was convenient for her.

“The buses arrive as stated on the electronic signboards,” she said.

Khoo Chun Yi, 24, who goes to Sunway Pyramid during the weekends also has no problems getting a bus.

“I seldom wait long for buses as they come on time,” he said.

PIS is part of a four-component project under Prasarana’s Fleet Tracking system and was implemented in 2011.

PIS, GPS system on buses and the trunk radios allow drivers to communicate directly with the Bus Control Centre (BCC).

“Every bus is fitted with a GPS, allowing the control centre located at the Rapid Bus headquarters in Old Klang Road to monitor bus movements. This GPS system covers all 169 routes serviced by Rapid KL buses throughout the Klang Valley,” said Prasarana group communication department senior manager Azhar Ghazali.

“With the trunk radio, the bus driver and staff stationed at the BCC can communicate and relay important information such as traffic flow or accidents.

“Buses moving too fast or too slow will also be alerted to avoid ‘bus bunching’ and ensure buses can keep to their schedules,” he said.

Azhar said as the BCC was equipped with TV monitors, staff were able to keep information current and key-in arrival and departure times on the electronic signboards.

He added that such information was displayed so that commuters could plan their journey better.

It is a multi-million ringgit project carried out to upgrade the public bus services in the Klang Valley.

However, the implementation is being done in stages.

One main challenge is getting approval from local authorities and Tenaga Nasional Bhd to intall the electronic signboards.

So far, 52 out of 59 electronic signboards have been installed at various bus stations while the remaining seven are expected to be put up soon.

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