The cruel injustice of buses that don't stop when you run after them

Categories: News
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Public buses that don't stop when we run to try to catch them always struck us as a unavoidable fact of life.

Jeffrey Bradley, a sometime blogger for Miami Beach's Alliance for Reliable Transit, haughtily disagrees with that concept. We were copied on an e-mail Bradley sent to Miami-Dade Transit director Harpal Kapoor decrying the injustice of being left in the exhaust dust when he, like, really wants to be on that bus. He brags up his fancy transit blogger "connections" and demands a "soothing response", all in an irate and condescending tone.

Jeffrey, you'll be gratified to know we also put a call in to Miami-Dade Transit, inquiring as to their policy when people are chasing after their buses. No word back yet, but we'll let you know. Their policy might reflect the idea that if the bus stopped for everybody, it would never leave, you know?

We've included Jeffrey's awesome letter below.

Harpal,

Once more I am writing to relate an inexcusable instance of arrogance on the part of a Miami Beach bus operator. If I have to report every rogue driver to effect the simple change of making bus operators understand their role of serving the public, I will. As such, shouldn't they be giving the benefit of the doubt, any doubt, to the tax-paying passenger? That's passenger as in the public. And driver as in the public servant. What about this simple equation do the operators have the most difficulty in getting?

At precisely 1:37 on Thursday, March 5, I ran for a northbound M bus stopped at Washington Avenue and Lincoln Road to pick up passengers. As I approached from behind the doors began to close, so I pounded the window side nearest the curb to get the driver's attention. But rather than pausing the driver instead pulled away.

Now, this was a choice, plain and simple. And rude. Believe me when I say that that ambiguous dodge of "They weren't at the bus stop" only reinforces the whole point of passive hostility, at best, or hazardous indifference, at worst. And it's certainly no selling point for increasing your ridership.

In fact, it's outrageous. Do you know how long before another M bus arrives there? Sign says 30-60 minutes, and chances are good you'll await it all. Now, what if I had been elderly, or infirm, and really needed to get that bus? This driver, tho', instead of cordially stopping gave me the transit equivalent of the middle finger. And so, again, here we are.

Unfortunately, this scenario plays out innumerable times a day. Not to me only personally; I see it happening to others-and when it does, and I'm on the bus, I loudly let the driver [know] of their duty to stop.

Now, I'm articulate enough, ornery enough, and with enough connections to expect results when I complain. if nothing more than a soothing response. But after all, what's being asked? Nothing more than basic civility, really, let alone a driver's adhering to job description points concerning safety. Is this bad behavior tolerated because of a misplaced union security? It's so pervasive and widespread that I don't know what else to ascribe it to.

I'd like to thank you by way of permitting me to speak my mind. I appreciate your attention, and remain committed to positive change.

Sincerely,

Jeffrey Bradley
Miami Beach transit bloggist


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