Bus Observations 2024.

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Swift
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Re: Bus Observations 2024

Post by Swift »

Linto63 wrote: Sun Apr 07, 2024 7:28 pm Was a stand alone lithium battery that caught fire at Custom Denning's St Marys factory. Contrary to the ill-informed observation' that the exclusion zone was established as a cover up, it was done so because of the intense heat generated that required 20 tonnes of sand to extinguish and at one stage necessitated fire crews standing down.
Doesn't exactly vindicate EVs as a safe mode of the future.
The state government has changed its tune since the late 1990s when it rejected the Designline EV buses on favour of the noisy farm tractors we got.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by MiCCROwavE_OVEN »

I'm not personally a big fan of EVs (I much prefer diesels - especially the ones from the late 90s!) but the statistics do show that electric vehicles are less likely to catch fire than conventionally fuelled vehicles.

According to this university report, petrol and diesel vehicles are 20 times more likely to catch fires - however from research from other sources the numbers referenced in this figure are quite small - in the order of hundredths, so fires in any motor vehicle are quite rare anyway.
https://www.swinburne.edu.au/news/2023/ ... es-higher/

The main issue with electric vehicles seems to be that the fires are fuelled by the lithium-ion batteries, which naturally ignite more easily than diesel or gasoline. This does pose a safety threat - unlike with diesel buses, where the bus smokes for a minute or two before bursting into flames, electric vehicles smoke for a few seconds, then explode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T71cVhxG_v4
But hopefully more advanced fire suppression systems will be all that is required to increase the amount of time passengers have to escape. More emergency exits might also be handy - on many buses, the emergency exits are concentrated around the front.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by tonyp »

MiCCROwavE_OVEN wrote: Mon Apr 08, 2024 5:00 pm I'm not personally a big fan of EVs (I much prefer diesels - especially the ones from the late 90s!) but the statistics do show that electric vehicles are less likely to catch fire than conventionally fuelled vehicles.

According to this university report, petrol and diesel vehicles are 20 times more likely to catch fires - however from research from other sources the numbers referenced in this figure are quite small - in the order of hundredths, so fires in any motor vehicle are quite rare anyway.
https://www.swinburne.edu.au/news/2023/ ... es-higher/

The main issue with electric vehicles seems to be that the fires are fuelled by the lithium-ion batteries, which naturally ignite more easily than diesel or gasoline. This does pose a safety threat - unlike with diesel buses, where the bus smokes for a minute or two before bursting into flames, electric vehicles smoke for a few seconds, then explode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T71cVhxG_v4
But hopefully more advanced fire suppression systems will be all that is required to increase the amount of time passengers have to escape. More emergency exits might also be handy - on many buses, the emergency exits are concentrated around the front.
Electric buses per se are a lower fire risk. It's the fact that they're losding them up with so many batteries that's created a volitile situation.

The Element is the only modern Austrslian city bus of any type that has sufficient emergency exits imho. Since manufacturers abandoned rear windows it's been a downhill trend with emergency exits. It's amazing that regulatory agencies haven t been on to it.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by lunchbox »

I'd like to know how many buses in the NSW bus fleet have FUNCTIONING fire suppression systems (FSS).
I assume they all have FSS when new, but the FSS is not inspected along with everything else (brakes, tyres, seat-belts, etc...) at the mandatory 6-monthly inspections by TfNSW.
Why?: because FSS systems are apparently not designed to be tested for functionality.
So it appears nobody knows how many passenger buses are in service in NSW with non-functioning fire suppression systems.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

MiCCROwavE_OVEN wrote: Mon Apr 08, 2024 5:00 pm https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T71cVhxG_v4
But hopefully more advanced fire suppression systems will be all that is required to increase the amount of time passengers have to escape. More emergency exits might also be handy - on many buses, the emergency exits are concentrated around the front.
By carrying 20 tonnes of sand you mean?
I find it hard to believe a vehicle carrying so much power packed in a small space is less likely to catch on fire, but even if that's the case, when they do, it's clearly much more intense and a nightmare to put out as I've seen on videos with loaders having to physically move the burning EV car to a safer location to let the fire burn out naturally.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Merc1107 »

lunchbox wrote: Mon Apr 08, 2024 8:36 pmI'd like to know how many buses in the NSW bus fleet have FUNCTIONING fire suppression systems (FSS).
I assume they all have FSS when new, but the FSS is not inspected along with everything else (brakes, tyres, seat-belts, etc...) at the mandatory 6-monthly inspections by TfNSW.
Why?: because FSS systems are apparently not designed to be tested for functionality.
So it appears nobody knows how many passenger buses are in service in NSW with non-functioning fire suppression systems.
That's a peculiar hypothesis to be working from. Just because something's functionality cannot be tested, does not mean it cannot be inspected - one doesn't need to road test a bus with a flat tyre to tell that it is flat.

You can't test "functionality" of fire suppression systems (for instance, when do they ever test the sprinklers in apartment buildings?), as in many cases the system, once used, must be replaced or replenished (not to mention cleaning up several kilos worth of fire retardant if the system is not water-based), but the system itself would receive periodic inspection in line with whatever is mandated, for example, handheld fire extinguishers have to be checked and stamped every 6mos. If a fault develops between inspections, the system will usually generate some sort of warning, and the appropriate response is the bus being taken off the road immediately.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024

Post by Linto63 »

A newsclip on the Custom Denning fire can be found on ABC News NSW's broadcast of 7 April starting at 14:40, available on iview (login required). Plenty of TfNSW liveried Elements about, presumably destined for Transit Systems. At 15:07 one of the 2009 built Quality bodied Cummins powered Volvo B7Rs that were not included in the sale of Telfords by the Dunn Group to Kinetic can be seen, evidently not having attracted a buyer after more than four years.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Stu »

lunchbox wrote: Mon Apr 08, 2024 8:36 pm I'd like to know how many buses in the NSW bus fleet have FUNCTIONING fire suppression systems (FSS).
I assume they all have FSS when new, but the FSS is not inspected along with everything else (brakes, tyres, seat-belts, etc...) at the mandatory 6-monthly inspections by TfNSW.
Why?: because FSS systems are apparently not designed to be tested for functionality.
So it appears nobody knows how many passenger buses are in service in NSW with non-functioning fire suppression systems.
25962
It is possible for the FFS to activate before a flame is present if enough heat is generated generated.

Electric buses have two FSS, one on the roof near the battery and one in the rear engine bay area that houses electrical equipment.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Nath91! »

Ex-Tempe m/o 1583 B12BLE spotted on Muir Road Chullora this morning on a school special. It sounded like a dying cow, making an absolute horrid howling noise as it accelerated.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Randomness »

Yes, that and a few other B12s must waste about 30% of their energy in sound, and 60% in heat.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by MiCCROwavE_OVEN »

Were the Euro III B12BLEs always this loud? It makes me wonder why they are still allowed to operate at night... and whether hush-kits are available.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Lt. Commander Data »

MiCCROwavE_OVEN wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 5:26 pm Were the Euro III B12BLEs always this loud? It makes me wonder why they are still allowed to operate at night... and whether hush-kits are available.
Despite whatever perceived “loudness” you are hearing (most probably the engine fans on those B12s), I bet they are still quieter than what they replaced.

“Why are they still allowed to operate at night?” - because they are a public service bus that comply with annual inspections, DDA Regs, and ADRs.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

The engine itself is quiet, it's the thermo fan that roars away or some other defective ancillary emitting strange noises. Not sure if the car alarm triggering exhaust brakes were cut back or disconnected altogether. I haven't noticed the loud exhaust brakes going off for years, but then again I'm rarely in Sydney at all these days.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Merc1107 »

The lone B12BLE in Darwin (itself a Euro III) was prone to having its fans roar. After a couple of months off-traffic in 2021, it returned to service without the nuisance racket ever surfacing again.

So it seems to me the "problem" may simply be a lack of preventative maintenance (steam cleaning of the radiator, trans cooler, intercooler etc), or a design that makes the bus sensitive to even light accumulation of dirt and detritus.

Additionally, I seem to recall the CNG OC500LE was prone to having some failure that would cause the fans to needlessly lock on (they also have a glitch where the fans wouldn't come on at all without a restart, I'm told) and wonder if this doesn't happen with B12s too, even though they use a hydraulic fan vs a physical drive off the accessory belt.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

It helps when you have one bus that can get this attention. Multiple units scattered around these contractors that need them out doing duty and have others to repair with higher priority repairs, means it will take time to get so many sorted out should they undertake to get them done at all.

I wonder if any will be game to take them on in the preservation scene now that retirement is looming?
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by ScaniaGrenda »

Swift wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 7:34 pm I wonder if any will be game to take them on in the preservation scene now that retirement is looming?
Not 100% sure if it is in preservation yet but NKV tours already has a few of the ex Newcastle B12's (and former m/o 1407 that was dereg for parts)

Sydney Bus Museum has government bus day upcoming on the 4th of August and NKV was in attendance last year with 3405 O405N (Flat floor Benz). I dare say if he attends he'd be keen on wanting to bring m/o 1406 along. (Holds STA CC Body # STAN001). Although that's up to him and subject to various factors, just saying I can't see such a person not bringing along his newest addition for Government Bus day.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by ScaniaGrenda »

On another observation, I noticed Fleet-lists has a new addition for Sid-Foggs Fullerton Cove TV 409B, I may have spotted this new coach parked up at the back of a warehouse in Rutherford (Same place I've been seeing coaches occasionally randomly pop up and then eventually vanish including some from PSC)

Not badged as a Volvo, just has the Irizar I6S emblem and Sid Fogg's decal however has fleet No #17 on it, there is a fleet #15 on Fleet-lists and a fleet #16 fleet no but no #17 listed at present, I'd say this is their #17.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Transport Buff »

Another tragic fatal crash between bus & car....in Rouse Hill. Car ran red light. Bus was not in service

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rFbHT-DYR0E
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

Saw it on Seven. Front passenger was killed. The rest have serious injuries including broken bones.
Child in a seat restraint avoided injury.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

ScaniaGrenda wrote: Wed Apr 10, 2024 10:01 am
Swift wrote: Tue Apr 09, 2024 7:34 pm I wonder if any will be game to take them on in the preservation scene now that retirement is looming?
Not 100% sure if it is in preservation yet but NKV tours already has a few of the ex Newcastle B12's (and former m/o 1407 that was dereg for parts)

Sydney Bus Museum has government bus day upcoming on the 4th of August and NKV was in attendance last year with 3405 O405N (Flat floor Benz). I dare say if he attends he'd be keen on wanting to bring m/o 1406 along. (Holds STA CC Body # STAN001). Although that's up to him and subject to various factors, just saying I can't see such a person not bringing along his newest addition for Government Bus day.
I wonder if the first Sydney ones 15xx that were originally at M and N will end up in the hands of charter operators and/or preservationists? Is the thoreb display and other complex computer run features they have a deal breaker?
All I know is they make an Orana Scania or Volvo seem like a Leyland Worldmaster in relative simplicity.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

Still on CB60s, saw a a Busways Scania K230UB driving the other way in Bensville sporting it's new TNSW livery looking nice with the headlight panels painted dark blue. I thought it was a B12BLE as it reminded me of them but it had the EvoII rear when I checked. Great to see.
A big improvement on the all over white.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Randomness »

https://opendata.transport.nsw.gov.au/d ... b2024.xlsx

February was a horrible month for operators. Every single one fell behind the 95% on time running KPI (91.8% average), untracked trips sat at 11.8%, and complaints hit a record of 31/100k, compared to 15/100k in January.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Merc1107 »

February the new March? In all seriousness though, that's a pretty significant deterioration, especially complaints.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by BanksfielderIdiot823 »

A slight tracking cockup from NextThere on some Volgren CR228L MAN 18.320 HOCL-R-NLs on my route at the moment… (sighted on both TSA 1122 as per the screenshot below, and 1133)
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No; there are no buses of this kind at TSA, only Keolis and CDC-Forest have them.
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Re: Bus Observations 2024.

Post by Swift »

Looks like an office block on wheels.
I thought we were done with square =modern by the 1990s. Have to give credit where it's due with the CDi. It really looks 21st century.
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