Cork bus services missing targets

Cork bus services missing targets

Almost a quarter of city bus services in Cork operated by Bus Éireann failed to meet any targets for punctuality last year. New figures published by the National Transport Authority show five out of 21 routes missed the required punctuality rate set for each of 13 four-week periods during 2018.

The 214 service between St Patrick’s Street and Cork University Hospital had an average punctuality rate of 42% and the 223 route from the city centre to Haulbowline had an average punctuality rate of 46%. The others were the 216 Mount Oval-CUH route (44%); the 220 Ovens to Carrigaline service via the city centre (45%) and the 220X from Ovens to Fountainstown (47%).

Low frequency services —the majority of regional city routes operated by Bus Éireann — are classified as punctual if they depart from each bus stop along a route not more than one minute early and not more than 5 minutes and 59 seconds later than the scheduled departure time. Punctuality targets differ throughout the year as traffic conditions have a significant impact on performance.

The targets are set to take into account a number of factors including school terms and weather with traffic congestion levels generally lower during the summer.

The targets last year ranged from 54% in autumn/early winter to 55% in summer.

The NTA has been raising target rates since 2017 and they are set in the range 62-63% for 2019.

Only one Bus Éireann service in Cork met all of its targets on punctuality last year — the 202 route. The service, which runs between the Apple campus in Holyhill and Mahon had an average punctuality rate of 61%.

Other routes which had a comparatively good record for being on time in 2018 were the 226 service from Cork railway station to Kinsale and the 215A from Jacob’s Island to the South Mall which both had an average punctuality rate of 57%.

High-frequency routes — those which operate at least every 15 minutes outside peak periods — are currently excluded from the requirement to meet punctuality targets for the purpose of calculating if Bus Éireann meets the terms of its service contract with the NTA. There are four high frequency routes in Cork including the 202. The others are the 205, 206 and 208.

An NTA spokesperson said it measured punctuality based on the overall bus network operated by Bus Éireann in the main regional cities and towns rather than on individual routes. “If network-wide performance falls below contractual targets in any four-week reporting period, performance payment deductions will apply,” the spokesman said.

Although overall punctuality rates are increasing, Bus Éireann still missed all targets for the first three quarters of 2018, narrowly. The State-owned bus company can lose up to 5% of the value of its annual State contract if it fails to meet punctuality targets – a potential loss of €2.75m last year.

The NTA spokesperson said punctuality performance by Bus Éireann had “recovered significantly” after alterations to timetables during 2018 and exceeded targets towards the end of the year on a network-wide basis.

More on this topic

Children can travel free with on public transport until end of JulyChildren can travel free with on public transport until end of July

Government to fund all counties with evening busesGovernment to fund all counties with evening buses

Senator calls for 'dedicated public transport police unit' to be introducedSenator calls for 'dedicated public transport police unit' to be introduced

New Metrolink south route set to stop at CharlemontNew Metrolink south route set to stop at Charlemont

More in this Section

Murder accused 'wouldn’t be in current situation' had she not been abused as child, court hearsMurder accused 'wouldn’t be in current situation' had she not been abused as child, court hears

Boy, 17, missing in DublinBoy, 17, missing in Dublin

'Those cows would have been coming to me” - Cork farmer claiming €1.6m in damages"Those cows would have been coming to me” - Cork farmer claiming €1.6m in damages

'We'd prefer to be working' - Ambulance staff begin second day of strike over union recognition'We'd prefer to be working' - Ambulance staff begin second day of strike over union recognition


Lifestyle

Garbage offered a pop twist on grunge’s maximalist angst when they materialised in a dramatic swirl in the mid-Nineties. Like a candy-cane Nirvana, they were bleak and baroque but with tunes you could hum in the dark.Garbage's return to Dublin well worth the wait

Circle back to fashion's hottest retro print, says Annmarie O'Connor.Trend of the Week: Circling back to fashion's hottest retro print

Ever wondered what it would be like to move lock, stock and barrel into a tiny home, like the ones on Netflix’s Tiny House Nation?Are you ready to join the tiny-house movement?

Kya deLongchamps reports back on the performance of her photovoltaic array and wonders if it could handle the addition of an electric carDIY: Get ready for a natural high

More From The Irish Examiner