Bus Benches

Billboard Bus Shelters and Benches

Billboard Bus Shelters in Dunedin

RoadHog

Eller Media is advertising itself as an ugly Road Hog. An apt description of the effect advertising has when used in public bus shelters. It is advertising that can’t be turned off and often in on the public right-of-way at drivers’ eye level. In the Clearwater Florida area such advertisements rent for $500 per month for a 24 square foot sign.

Bus Benches with advertising often are justified as a public service to the bus rider. Below are two such benches in areas where there are no bus stops. This exists despite a Pinellas County ordinance which allows advertising benches only at bus stops. Enforcement of bus bench advertising is usually easy because a real bus stop has a bus stop sign erected by the transit authority.

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Bus Bench Advertising

Buses form the backbone of public transit operations in the United States and are a major means of intercity transportation. According to the American Public Transportation Association, Americans took approximately 5.1 billion trips by transit bus in 2015, accounting for nearly half of all transit trips.

Safety issues not being effectively addressed are directly related to distracted drivers of vehicles including:

• Cell phone/smart phone use — talking, reading email, social media and texting
• Standard and electronic billboard distractions

Many additional distractions occur inside our vehicles including GPS use, video-watching, bad weather, tiredness, eating, drinking, looking for on-premise signs, talking and other similar distractions like advertising on bus benches.

The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has published a paper that evaluates the riskiest factors faced by drivers based on data collected by TRB’s second Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP 2) Naturalistic Driving Study (NDS). Crash causation has shifted dramatically in recent years, with driver-related factors (i.e., error, impairment, fatigue, and distraction) present in almost 90% of crashes. The results also definitively show that distraction is detrimental to driver safety, with handheld electronic devices having high use rates and risk.

“Crash risk factors were observable driver distraction, including the use of in-vehicle and handheld devices, active interaction with passengers, and outside distractions.” 3/8/2016 TRB Transportation Research Board of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.

The authors are with the Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of South Florida, Tampa. Perk is Senior Research Associate, and Hinebaugh is Interim Executive Director. Perk serves as Vice Chair of the TRB Transit Capacity and Quality of Service Committee, and Hinebaugh is Chair of the Public Transportation Group and immediate past Chair of the Bus Transit Systems Committee

Some photographs on this page are copyright by Steve Vaughn, and used here with permission.
Please visit www.stevevaughn.com