Media release: The NSW Government’s on-demand bus trials are costing taxpayers around $150 per person, per trip to run and are merely a poorly designed opportunity for private operators to extract more money from the travelling public, the RTBU says.

Data in the Sydney Morning Herald on Friday outlines how dismal a failure many of the on-demand services have been.

Tram and Bus Division of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) NSW Secretary, David Babineau said that regular bus routes are being axed or changes in order to make room for the on-demand services.

“The Transport Minister can try and spin it as much as he wants, but the evidence shows that these new on-demand services are a failure. Given that there are no minimum patronage numbers in the evaluations, it’s hard to see how you can benchmark it’s performance but from a financial perspective it’s clearly not working.

“To accommodate the services and try and ensure a minimum patronage, regular route services are being replaced with these on-demand services.

“We know that in the Eastern Suburbs for example, the 379 service has been cut. Now we see an on-demand service popping up to service the gap deliberately created.

“The Transport Minister’s plan to attack our vital public transport services is crystal clear, and commuters are bearing the brunt of it. Once the motivation changes from public service to private profit, it’s a race to the bottom in terms of quality of service and the treatment of staff.

“This government doesn’t seem to care how taxpayer money is spent. The decision has been made to throw public money at companies till it works, then let the private operators reap the rewards of an established clientele they didn’t have to pay for.”

 

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