USDOT rule to improve bus testing, safety, reliability

From Metro:

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) today announced a Final Rule that will improve the process for ensuring the safety and reliability of new transit buses funded with FTA dollars.

The new rule will establish a set of minimum performance standards, a standardized scoring system, and a pass-fail threshold that will better inform local transit agencies as they evaluate and purchase buses for use in their communities.

“Throughout our nation, millions of Americans rely on transit buses every day, and they expect to ride in safe, reliable vehicles that meet or exceed federal requirements,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “This rule will help local transit agencies put well-tested, high-quality vehicles on the road, while streamlining the testing process.”

The new bus testing rule will require newly procured buses to meet minimum thresholds in key areas such as safety, reliability, and performance. Existing procedures used by the FTA Bus Testing Facility will largely remain intact, but data generated will be used to apply a new 100-point scoring system to tested buses, making it easier to compare similarly sized bus models from different manufacturers.

Importantly, for the first time, bus models that fail to meet one or more minimum performance standards will “fail” their test and thus be ineligible for purchase with FTA funds until the failures are resolved. FTA will be able to use this authority to make sure defects are fixed before vehicles are allowed to go into service.

“FTA is proud to support communities seeking to improve their bus transit service – a lifeline for so many to access jobs and opportunities,” said FTA Acting Administrator Carolyn Flowers. “Ensuring that unsafe buses never reach service protects those communities and bus passengers, and demonstrates FTA’s continued commitment to making safety its number one priority.”

The Final Rule follows the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking..............   READ MORE >

  Fla.'s JTA recieves $7.2M for BRT project

Fla.'s JTA recieves $7.2M for BRT project

Fla.’s Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) announced that the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has reallocated $7.2 million as a result of the efficient and effective project management of its First Coast Flyer™ North Corridor bus rapid transit (BRT) program.

The $7.2 million will be used to improvie sidewalks and ADA ramps within a half mile of the First Coast Flyer™ (FCF) North Corridor stations.

It will also be used to construct pedestrian access to the Armsdale Park-n-Ride facility. Bus and pedestrian safety will be improved by reconstructing Armsdale Road to include a curb and gutter, providing lane widths with adequate sidewalks to the Park-n-Ride facility opening this October. This location has one of the highest riderships of our FCF North Corridor service, with a high elderly population living in this area.

Recently, the JTA completed construction of the FCF North Corridor along Lem Turner Road. The community along this corridor is targeted by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Ladders of Opportunity Initiative, and received funding from the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department as part of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program.

The North Corridor is an area that continues to need improved and enhanced infrastructure to create and connect workforce opportunities that move more people into the middle class. Even with the improvements made during the FCF North Corridor project, this roadway continues to have significant infrastructure issues with missing sidewalks and lacking ADA accessibility for pedestrian movements.



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