Updated a couple bits Saturday June3 to make it more clear that I’m not intending to defame all Metro Drivers, but instead to point out a real problem, the poor way that a Metro Transit has chosen to handle it, and the fact that there are tons of great Metro Drivers who can make appropriate safety decisions without the aid of a posted sign.
The Metro Transit folks have put their foot down. No more being attentive to customer needs. Customer service is the group that answers the phones, not a way of treating your customers.
The short version is that in the “Transit Centers” (which are glorified parking loops with a couple of bus shelters), once the bus “leaves the transit bay” you’re SOL. And if you’re waiting for the interminable traffic light to cross 156th into the Overlake Transit Center when the bus pulls off the highway, crosses the bridge over 520, waits at a traffic light on the bridge, waits to turn right at the traffic light onto 156th, waits to turn right into the transit center, stops at the transit bay, loads up 50 passengers, and pulls away… whew… all while you’re still stuck waiting through the 5+ minute traffic light for the crosswalk across busy 156th… well, then you miss the bus.
Metro Transit must be sick of reports from one-or-more crappy-drivers among their overall driver rank-and-file that people are trying to get the bus to open the doors at one of the later transit bays in the center that the bus has to drive past. Or perhaps the reports are about people trying to get the bus to open the door while it sits for 2–3 minutes at the red-light (safely inside the transit center) before it can turn left to exit.
And we can’t have that! No way can we, while safely stopped inside the transit center, open the door to let some additional riders onto the bus!! That’s just madness! What next, we start to enforce a system where “pay as you leave” is replaced with something that doesn’t suck and all doors could be opened at a destination like Overlake where 95% of the bus has to trickle slowly through the front-door, paying as they leave?! Absolute madness!
But, Metro Transit must listen to these few awful drivers because they’ve posted this sign now at Overlake. Sorry about the rotten photo from my camera phone, but hopefully you can still make it out. I call it “Sign Dedicated to Evan’s Struggle Against Metro Transit”:
Wow. Good stuff.
But, there are still some great bus drivers who choose satisfied customers over faux safety. I won’t mention names, or times, or even routes (maybe it wasn’t even a driver on the 545 route), but there are definitely still drivers who will stop mid-block if they realize they’ve skipped a stop where someone was running. Or they’ll stop to let you on at the transit center red-light. Or whatever they can safely do to make sure you don’t have a rotten experience as a Metro Transit rider.
Bravo to these great bus drivers! I hope your kind prevails in this silent struggle! I’m sure this is most Metro Drivers, so you can make it happen!