ITE Journal - January 2020 - 45

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CASE STUDY

Measuring Bus Running Time Variation
during High-Frequency Operation
Using Automatic Data Collection Systems

S

By Seyed Mohammad Hossein Moosavi, Ph.D. and Choon Wah Yuen, Ph.D.
tudies have shown that commuters are more interested in a reliable service with fewer
deviations than in a service with a shorter headway.1,2 Researchers have found that
improving the reliability of service in terms of running time and variation in running
time leads to an increase in the passenger satisfaction levels and improvement in response

to demand.3,4 El-Geneidy et al. (2011) concluded that an important factor that can worsen transit
service reliability is the increase in the variation in running time for a given mean running time.5
Running time can be affected by passenger behavior variables.6,7
Moreover, some studies have identified various factors that
can affect bus running time, including the distance involved,
geometric conditions (such as the number of signalized intersections), tardiness at the beginning, time of day, number of
actual stops, environmental factors (such as rain and snow), and
traffic conditions.8
Cham (2006) stated that before adapting any improvement
strategies on a route, the service provider must understand the
main reasons for unreliability.9 Therefore, conducting studies on

bus operation irregularity and service unreliability helps service
providers and planners to adopt adequate strategies to enhance
service performance. Currently, many companies collect relevant
data and information automatically, but spend little effort to
use these data; they only make decisions based on professional
judgment. This situation seems to be worse in Malaysia, since no
studies are available on running time variation during high-frequency operations. Accordingly, this case study of bus running
times in the country can be very useful for bus service providers to
gain a deep insight into service variations and irregularity issues.
w w w .i t e.or g

J a n u ar y 2020

45


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ITE Journal - January 2020

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