Wednesday, July 18, 2012
A reader comments
Press Releases. Do they publish the full truth or what "fits"
their need for an article? It's a rare time to see the full
thruth and only the truth. I see it happen once a year, when
they do an article of my brother and his four legged son, whom
both were killed in action during the horrific Iraqi Freedom
War. They get those articles right, but they do leave out some
events of which happened around his death. How I know? Let us
just call it a hunch, when it has been confirmed from other's
in the Armed Forces.
Let us get back to the press releases, as you just saw
it fits what they want seen to the world. Its all about sales,
profit, politics and more. Now politics, it comes down to forcing
a friend to retire from Trimet. The news articles railroaded her
by publishing articles completely incorrect leading others to belive
of which they have so graciously bestowed onto public viewers.
Is it safe for any driver whether Transportation Employee or not
to drive whilst safety is in question? No. Could a screaming,
crying baby actually distract any driver? Yes, especially if the
person is not used to kids or it has been years since they have
had years since experience parenting. If this instant happens,
what is the driver supposed to do? Continue driving while they are
distracted? Risk the drivers, passengers life? Get in an accident?
Perhaps, we shall just pull over til it is no longer a distraction,
therefore safety would not even be in equation.
When Claudine became distracted to drive Trimet's 40 foot vehicles
whilst a baby was being disruptive she pulled over til she was
comfortable enough to drive again. Whom should be the person to judge
if it is safe for them to drive? The driver or some politics? It should
always be the driver to know whether or not they can drive. Despite her
distraction, Claudine offered the mother some candy to the mother, in
efforts to calm down the child so she may get back onto the road with
a bus load of passengers. The mother deboarded the bus with all of her
children. Claudine was nice enough to disembark offering the mother
assurance and comfort of all is well and she may continue to ride.
Secondly, the same mother with four children boarded another day with
expired transfers. Claudine informed the mother she was supposed to pay
to board the bus. The mother when ballastic, cussing at Claudine in their
very limited english and using one of their kids as a translator. Other
passengers were appalled and feared the worst. One took it in their hands,
calling 911. Police took the family home, after Claudine informed them
she did not feel safe.
Let me get this straight, in the first time Claudine became distracted and
safety came into measure so she reacted within Trimet Policy, and what every
driver should do by pulling over til safety wasn't a concern.
In the second instance, they had invalid fare and Claudine informed them
to pay in order to board. Then the mother had a fitt using foul language.
The safety of passengers and bus operator became hazardous. So a passenger
called for help.
In both times the mother used one of her children to translate as they are
hispanic. Perhaps the mother overreacted because of the limited english a child
would know, and it became a big miscommunication between the bus operator and the
Yes, Claudine had a lot of complaints, however, take a look at all the other operators,
as there are many, many others with a lot of complaints. Most complaints are
unsubstantiated as TriMet will not get off their tushies and actually pull the video
unless there is a crime in question. Perhaps they should actually view videos and follow
through with the complaints to see if it is true or not.
I recall witnessing an oriental minority bus operator telling a hispanic young adult to
disembark as the kid was smoking on the bus. Not only did the operator enforce rules,
he also addressed safety as the kid was right above the fuel tanks. He was preventing
a possible explosion, killing many passengers. A lady sitting across from me, had the
nerve to call the bus operator a racist and started to advise him of his job. Lucky for
me, I knew how to speak his native tongue, and advised him before he spoke to keep his
mouth shut and to rolling. They ignored that lady, as they should of. That I would handle
it. So I witnessed that same lady calling in to TriMet making a fabricated complaint. I decided
to teach her a lesson, I placed a call to Dispatch, giving a complete and thruthful discription of
what happened as well as told them of this lady, with a discription of what she looked like since
they asked. Dispatch informed me that she is a troublemaker. Sources told me the next day she yet
harrassed the same operator again over the events of the day before. The next day I decided
to ride the same route to the stop past that harrassing lady to view it with my own eyes again.
Sure enough, she started harrassing him again, for the kid smoking. I called dispatch and informed
them again of passenger is harrassing operators. They finally sent police officers to watch
and observe. She was arrested the following day, for harrassing another driver.
Oddly enough, this bus operator actually got fabricated complaints against him from that lady
that stuck on their file. The lady called in twice daily, for those days. The operator had that
many complaints, all matching the stories of which I personally heard the lady lie about. The bus
operator was actually put on probation for a couple of months due to that lady.
Another time, I witnessed a young african adult litterly harrass a bus operator and threaten them.
Ironically, I hadn't time to change clothes, was still in my fatigues. When that young lad started
calling the bus operator a bastard, and racist and advised him I am coming to whip your ass. I stepped
into the isle as the boy was coming towards the driver and felt the bus pulling over. I tossed a signal
to the driver, as I was regulary on that bus going home to keep where he was. I kept walking closer and
closer to this kid while he kept walking backwards. I gave him a choice, to remove himself or me forcing
him off. He chose to do it himself, however, taking too long and still using language. I strongly advised
him to get off the bus. He told me he was, and I gave him the ever so well known female ticked off look
and said "Now" and got in his face. He got off the bus on his own, that instant. The driver got complaints
for throwing a passenger off the bus from that kid. Odd, because I, a passenger, kicked him off.
You would think TriMet would actually view the video feeds, as all buses have security cameras. They hardly
do. You would think TriMet would be more there for their operators, good luck on that. They don't care.
TriMet says customer service has to be on the top, so why don't they practice Employee service? There are
circumstances where they need to actually step up to the plate. Management have no clue what the bus operators
go through day in and out. I would love to see them try driving a bus load of passengers and pulling over every
two blocks at stops. Perhaps then, management would realize what they expect of operators needs to be examined
more and better policies in place, as the driver rarely makes the time points either en route! A simple routine
pickup of someone handicapp places a bus operator 6 minutes down, as they have to stop, deploy the ramp, pull up
the ramp, secure the passenger, reseat, rebuckle, and roll out. Perhaps management needs to provide more security,
more safety, clearer policies and expetations, and stand by employees for once. Another example of management not
informing, being there, assisting, clarifying things to a bus operator is the day I witnessed, helped bus operators
work around the Barber TC when an operator new to the route, pulled in the one lane transit, bearing only one entrance
and one exit pulled in the transit through the exit. Now, a bus operator is not supposed to back up the bus, so what
are they going to do, when another bus comes through the entrance head on to each other. Thats when the bystanders drinking
coffee in the morning waiting for their bus scratch their heads and mutter "so much for my coffee" like I did. I walked over
to the operator that brought the bus in through the exit to pull a little foward and hug that curb. I walked over the the
bus that came in correctly and said "Ok I'll spot you follow my commands." I spotted him around the bus that went in the wrong
way, and watched the driver's mouths both drop open when they realized if it wasn't for the spotter, they would not have made
it past each other as there was litterly not even an inch of room to spare. In that case, why did not a Road Supervisor come
and tell the bus operator "hey this is an exit not entrance"? Why doesn't management take the time to go over new routes with
the bus operators? I am positive that operator would have liked to know before driving the route the first time what entrances
and exits to go through instead of tossing them out into the wild without a clue.
My point of all of this is management needs to get a clue, stop jumping the gun just for a ride and grow the hell up.
Yes, I really said that to you, TriMet Management. When you get out there, and start doing your job, correctly, like
all the other bus operators, knowing how to give real time points, giving an ear to bus operators then you can look me
up and hopefully learn a thing or two about your own policies.