Report: 178 bus drivers reprimanded for texting behind the wheel

By · Published in 2010

Since the beginning of 2010, the MTA has reprimanded a total of 178 bus drivers for texting while driving, a report in The Post said today. According Tom Namako and Joe Mollica, an additional seven drivers were summonsed for eating while behind the wheel, and another seven were caught reading. The Post tracked down a few New Yorkers who were outraged by the behavior — “That’s extremely troubling,” said one — but the MTA’s numbers tell a different story. The 192 cited in the article represent just 1.9 percent of the MTA’s staff of bus operators.

The MTA says it takes reports of driver misconduct seriously and will often dispatch agency officials to monitor bus drivers. Rider complaints, they say, a big part of the process. “The MTA views this as a very serious safety concern and we employ several methods of policing cellphone use behind the wheel,” Transit spokesman Charles Seaton told The Post.

Categories : Asides, Buses

9 Responses to “Report: 178 bus drivers reprimanded for texting behind the wheel”

  1. JP says:

    I see uniformed cops on patrol and sitting in squad cars alike, more interested in their phones than their environment.

    O brave new world,
    That has such people in’t

  2. Al D says:

    I think that NYCT bus operators are highly trained in their job, and I never even worry or think about my safety riding the bus. Texting and cell phone chatting seem to be extremely rare, but I have seen bus operators doing both. Prior to technology and I don’t see this any more, but they would have a chatty friend/passenger ride the route with them standing over the fare boxwith both deeply engaged in conversation which by default means driving while distracted.

    Sometimes a bus operator will listern to the radio, but that doesn’t bother me at all.

    • jon says:

      Here are the two differences between texting or talking on the phone and talking to passenger.

      When a driver is texting they must look down for a considerable period of time, to both write and read their messages. When talking on the phone they are either using one of their hands for the phone, or have an ear stopped up by the hands-free device.

      When talking to a passenger, the driver can keep both eyes on the road and have two hands for the vehicle.

  3. Edward says:

    Headline should read “178 bus drivers FIRED for texting behind the wheel.”

    • Marcus says:

      Amen to that!

      The MBTA (Boston) banned all operators from even carrying cell phones on the job after a couple high profile accidents. New York should adopt the same policy.

  4. Alon Levy says:

    One texter is all that’s necessary for disaster. It’s Veolia’s indifference to train operators’ texting while driving that led to the Chatsworth disaster, which killed 25 people.

  5. Sara Nordmann says:

    So–reading? Were they reading while stopped, such as on a break? It’s pretty damn near impossible to actually read a book while driving (and yes, I’ve tried it).

  6. Alix Roy says:

    To the MTA:

    I was in Queens at 187th street and Hillside avenue it was 3:19 PM

    (15:19) slightly overcast but clear enough to see passengers at

    intersections. I was waiting for a bus to take me to the bus

    terminal at 165 atreet. I saw a bus coming, I thus waved my hands to

    indicate that I wanted it to stop and pick me up. The bus simply

    went right past me as if I was not there. Why was I being ignored on

    a rainy day? The bus number was a Q-76 he was bus number 68-72. Once again, it was 15:19 or 3:19 PM in the afternoon. Fortunately for me, the next bus driver did not act the

    same way. After I waved my hands indicating that I want him to stop,

    he did stop. I was able to arrive at my destination.
    I tried to get more information about this bus who left in the rain, believe me I was angry. But he left the terminal almost immediately after he arrived, for I could not find that bus number (6872). Believe you me I searched for it. Please reprimand this driver.

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