In what it says is a move to enhance the safety of its vehicle operators, BC Transit is introducing full-barrier driver doors on some of its routes in select cities.
“The safety and well-being of BC Transit’s hardworking drivers is essential to getting people where they need to go,” said Claire Trevena, BC’s Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.
“BC Transit’s top priority is to deliver a safe, effective and efficient transit system,” said Manuel Achadinha, BC Transit President and Chief Executive Officer. “Introducing the full driver door will build on our commitment to improving the on-board welfare, security and comfort of passengers and drivers alike.”
The full driver door will still allow interaction with passengers and will be piloted on bus routes in Abbotsford, Kelowna, and Victoria.
A total of five full driver doors will be installed at a cost of approximately $6,000 each.
The proof of concept is a partnership between BC Transit, the provincial government, WorkSafeBC, the local unions and our local government partners.
At the conclusion of the proof of concept, BC Transit will create a plan to install full driver doors on what it calls “medium-duty” and “heavy-duty” buses across the province.
“Everyone has a right to a workplace that is free from harassment and violence,” said Harry Bains, Minister of Labour and Minister responsible for WorkSafeBC. “I applaud BC Transit for investing in workplace safety, making safety a priority and providing drivers with protections to reduce risks and prevent injuries.”
The move follows a similar driver-barrier door plan by TransLink, which announced all future buses it acquires will consist of a pre-installed safety barrier.
The equipment and the installation required costs approximately $5,000 per bus.
By 2027, approximately 75% of the entire bus fleet in Metro Vancouver will have safety barriers installed.
The decision was made after a similar pilot project by TransLink that took place over two years.