Although it is apparent that providing useful information has a positive effect on transit riders, no studies to date have investigated bus operators’ reactions to real-time arrival information and other potential rider information tools. In this study, the project team surveyed 253 bus operators to determine their views and values concerning the existing use of real-time information and to ask about future transit rider information applications. Almost all operators (93 and 91 % on two separate questions) were positive or neutral to the provision of real-time information. In addition, operators were receptive to building other new information applications, with all applications in the survey being supported by at least 60 % of the bus operators. The two most widely supported potential applications in the survey were additional tools to help blind and deaf-blind riders (89 % of bus operators favored) and an application that would aid riders in identifying physical stop, shelter and bus issues such as graffiti, broken parts or a need for lights (88 % of bus operators). Applications displaying data about past performance or current bus capacity received the least support (66 and 61 % respectively). This research gives a better understanding of the impact of rider information tools on bus operators, including the views and values of the operators, and the harms and benefits of such tools.
Watkins, K. E., Borning, A., Rutherford, G. S., Ferris, B., & Gill, B. (2013). Attitudes of Bus Operators Towards Real-Time Transit Information Tools. Transportation, 40(5), 961-980.