Saturday, March 22, 2008

There's A Detour, Driver!

I had a 9 A.M. meeting at Town Center this morning. Walking in front of the main office tower at 8:43 A.M., I saw the Outbound 20 Cutback heading for Pembroke East.

The problem is that I saw it. With utility construction on Constitution, Hampton Roads Transit (HRT) is having to divert buses "for 2-3 weeks" to a temporary transfer point on Jeanne Street behind Pembroke Mall. When the driver s-l-o-w-l-y made the turn towards Constitution, I thought he had seen the street barricades and remembered the detour. Instead the bus tried to get to Pembroke East through the Kmart shopping center's parking lot.

I realized then it was probably a driver who normally doesn't do Route 20 but is covering on the weekend. Thankfully Michael Ragsdale (who is slated to join HRT's User Citizen Advisory Committee) had given me the phone number for HRT's Southside Dispatch on Monday. I immediately called the Dispatcher on my cell phone to radio the bus over what was going on.


Michael Ragsdale said...

You're quite welcome for the number.

Michael Ragsdale said...

I take it Dispatch was none too thrilled a passenger called (especially since us passengers aren't supposed to ;)

Avenging Archangel said...

I will use that number rarely. However, in this case a bus was off-route, ramming through a construction zone, missing a DTC, etc.

I called out of concern for those who might have been at the temporary DTC: if the bus continued off-route, it wouldn't be there to pick them up. Those waiting behind Pembroke Mall would be stranded unless I could reach the Dispatcher to redirect the bus right away.

I have a number where I could turn the driver in to be disciplined, but that wouldn't have helped those waiting behind the Mall.

Michael Ragsdale said...

ok. It happened to me once when I needed a 12 redirected from Auburn to Providence (Michelle wasn't too thrilled that I called - even though I called for a similar reason). I was coming from Greenbrier heading to TCC back when the Auburn Dr & College Park Blvd was under construction. But it is true that Dispatch doesn't like it when passengers call. I do remember ages ago when Michelle got on the radio and specifically told drivers "do not give out the Dispatcher phone number."