Improved bus fleet quality in autumn 2017, a slight drop in the quality of rolling stock

In the fleet quality control conducted by HSL in autumn 2017, the quality of bus fleet was better than in spring 2017: 65% of the inspected vehicles were in good condition, with no quality deviations. In spring 2017, the figure was 59. The improvements are largely due to new vehicles: the average age of bus fleet has gone down from 7.2 years in 2011 to 5.5 years in 2016.

The quality of Metro and tram rolling stock was slightly down from spring 2017, with 74% of the Metro trains and 69% of trams being in good condition. In spring 2017, the corresponding figures were 70% and 73%. A slightly higher number of Metro trains were in good condition in the autumn than in the spring, but the trains that were not in good condition had more defects in the autumn than in the spring. Consequently, the Metro rolling stock was, as a whole, in somewhat poorer condition than in the spring. Defects were found in windows, interior walls and handrails. On trams, the most common deviations were different defects on floors and stairs.

The quality of trains was slightly down from the previous control. HSL conducted quality controls on trains for the first time in spring 2016. In autumn 2017, one or more quality deviations were observed in 66% of the train units examined. The figure sounds high compared to the other modes of transport but train units are larger in size than e.g. buses and the number of quality factors examined is higher than on other modes. Consequently, the number of quality deviations observed on commuter trains is always higher than on other modes of transport. Cleanliness of seats is a particular area for improvement.

HSL conducts fleet quality controls twice a year

HSL conducts field observations twice a year to evaluate the quality of public transport fleet. During each research cycle, the cleanliness and condition of nearly 4,000 buses, trams, Metro trains and commuter trains is examined. In autumn 2017, 74% of the observations were made on bus services, 7% on tram services, 7% on commuter trains and 12% on Metro services. The results for different modes of transport are not comparable as the characteristics and number of factors examined vary from one mode of transport to another.

The goal of fleet quality controls is to improve the quality of travel. In addition, the results are utilized to determine the quality bonus payments and quality sanctions to operators, as well as to improve fleet quality. Fleet quality controls have been conducted since 2012. Passenger satisfaction with the cleanliness of public transport vehicles has improved over the year.

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