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MTA New York City Transit Offers Bus Safety Tips for Riders and Pedestrians

Bus and pedestrian graphic
Bus and pedestrian graphic
The MTA has one overriding concern; the safe operation of North America’s largest public transportation system.  Recognizing that safety is everyone’s responsibility and realizing that sometimes we could all use a little reminder, MTA New York City Transit’s marketing division has partnered with bus operations to create a colorful new print campaign advising bus riders, pedestrians and cyclists how to remain safe onboard and around buses.
The campaign, which aligns perfectly with the NYC Transit’s safety-oriented bus operator training program, is comprised of a "Bus Safety Brochure" and three posters, all containing common-sense advice for anyone riding, walking near or cycling in the vicinity of MTA buses that collectively carry 2.7 million customers a day. The brochure offers several common-sense tips on bus safety—things we all may know but might not always think about or practice.
“This campaign is illustrative of our efforts to promote safety both in and around our buses.   Sometimes, just a gentle reminder is all you need to save someone from serious injury, or worse, and that’s what this campaign is all about,” said NYC Transit President Carmen Bianco. “But we are also extremely proud of our efforts to train our bus operators to avoid accidents.”
Safety is a key component of the MTA’s daily operation.  State-of-the-art bus operator simulators are combined with extensive classroom and behind the wheel training for bus operators. 
“Safety is always our number one focus, but we realize that sometimes it is necessary to provide a visible reminder to our customers and the public at large.  In today’s fast paced electronic world, it is easy to become distracted.  The creation and display of these materials serve as visible reminders and provide useful tips on how to stay safe and keep out of harm’s way,” said Darryl Irick, President MTA Bus & Senior Vice President, NYC Transit Department of Buses.  
“We have developed an extremely effective bus operator training program which focuses on safety, but safety is everyone’s responsibility.  We look forward to taking this recognized world-class safety campaign to the next level through partnership with the city and its renewed focus on safety via the Vision Zero initiative.  We have begun to share information and ideas to make our city safer.” 
While most of the advice offered in the poster campaign has been offered previously, the current round of messaging highlights what safety experts call “situational awareness.”  The message advises those who may be distracted by cell phones, headphones and other electronic devices to stay alert when walking or riding a bike. 
Safety tips offered:
Inside the bus
 • Hold on to a railing while boarding and exiting the bus;
 • Keep baggage, strollers, and other obstructions out of the aisle;
 • Hold your baby and folded stroller when on the bus;
 • Take extra care on bus steps or the bus floor in wet and wintry weather;
 • Don’t talk to the bus operator when the bus is in motion;
 • Stand behind the white line located in the front of the bus;
 • Avoid blocking the bus operator’s view;
 • Stay seated or hold the handrail (if standing) before the bus moves or is in motion;
 • Don’t stand in the rear door stairwell;
 • Keep your head and arms inside the bus;
 • Ask the bus operator if you require the bus to be lowered or repositioned so you may exit safely.
Outside the bus
 • Stand clear as the bus approaches or drives away from the bus stop;
 • Walk—don’t run—to catch a bus; 
 • Do not cross in front of the bus.  Let the bus leave first.  Always cross at the corner;
 • Watch for cars and other moving vehicles after you leave the bus;
 • Step back when a bus is making a turn in front of you; 
 • Stay alert.  Whether on foot or riding a bike, don't be distracted by using cell phones, headphones, and other devices that can cause you to collide with a bus.
The safety message in both the brochure and the posters is being dispensed in six languages; English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Russian and Creole.  Visuals include, figures demonstrating correct and incorrect behavior with green representing the right behavior and red portraying wrong—dangerous—behavior.
The posters are currently being installed onboard buses and the riders can pick up the brochures beginning this month.