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FTA Five Year Plan To Study Transit Bus Automation

Posted @ Friday, May 04, 2018    By Mike Miller
Posted in [ Blog, Clients Only, Transportation, Transportation ] | 0 Comments

The Federal Transit Administration released a report on transit bus automation outlining benefits of and barriers to development and implementation.  The report was written by FTA with the support of the John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center (Massachusetts).

Automated vehicle technologies range from driver assistance applications to fully automated systems that do not require a human driver.  The report outlines FTA’s five year plan to explore the application of automation levels to bus operations, including:

  • automated shuttle services;
  • advanced driver assistance systems;
  • maintenance, yard, and parking operations; 
  • mobility-on-demand service; and
  • automated bus rapid transit applications.

Potential benefits of automated operations include increased safety, reduced liability, decreased operations and maintenance costs, reduced environmental impacts, increased service availability and operational efficiency, and improved customer satisfaction. Obstacles identified in the report including public and agency acceptance, workforce impacts and labor objections, capital investment issues, technology availability and maturity, safety, and security.

The full FTA/Volpe report is located here and a useful FTA fact sheet on automated bus systems is located here

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