Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Accident Rates
Located in Boston, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority announced that MBTA bus drivers are actually safer than many motorists. But Boston injury attorney Thiadora Pina notes that “even though MBTA bus drivers are being more cautious, accidents still happen and people are still get injured.”
According to the press release, the MBTA averaged 1.3 bus accidents for every hundred thousand miles last year, which represents a drop of more than 25% from 2007.
Although the MBTA has had several bus and subway accidents over the past year, most of the bus accidents (an estimated 83%) could not have been prevented by the bus driver. Those statistics found that an auto driver is four times more likely to make an error that results in a traffic accident with a bus than the MBTA bus driver is. The MBTA’s accident rate is the equivalent of a car driver going an average of six years between accidents – while managing 40-to-60-foot-long vehicles, constantly pulling into and out of stops, operating on congested streets, and taking care of customers inside the bus.
These findings could be attributed to several factors. The MBTA performs routine safety audits of routes and stops to find and address potential safety hazards, and rides buses to covertly observe operators that have been reported as operating in a manner not consistent with MBTA safety rules and regulations. The MBTA is always looking for ways to improve safety.
Some steps taken recently include a new operator recertification program, a new “bus simulator” simulated driving environment to improve training, and a zero-tolerance policy on possession of cell phones and electronic devices.