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Roadside matrix signs.


Sparky71
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There was a fire at the rear of a house in Woolston today near the Premier Inn. The A57 Manchester Road was closed for a couple of hours while it was tackled. I went from my house towards town no problem but I passed dozens of cars, lorries etc going in the opposite direction, turning round along the road when they discovered the closure. I checked the matrix signs along the route to see if there was any warning displayed-nothing apart from the usual "covid messages. If ever there was a time to use them to help out the road users, it was today. Just a simple "A57 closed at M6 J21" would suffice. What on earth are they for?

On another issue, I was in a city in the south of England last week and used their buses. Each bus stop had the matrix signs like we used to have here. The next 3 buses to use that stop were displayed along with their eta, of which my bus was spot on. Come on Warrington, get your **** in gear.

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The bus stop signs, when they were working, were more of a wish list than an actual bus due indications. The electronic screens in the bus station have either been wrong or blank for over a week now. I don't think WBC does 20th century technology never mind 21st 😅.

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I’ve spent most of my life working in the electronics and communications business making systems here in Warrington to do pretty much the same. To make a system to preform this most basic of tasks isn’t that hard and could have been done at a fraction of the cost.

I’m just don the road at Paddington BTW and I looked out within a minute of the fire being reported but couldn’t see any smoke.

 

Bill 😊

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39 minutes ago, asperity said:

The bus stop signs, when they were working, were more of a wish list than an actual bus due indications. The electronic screens in the bus station have either been wrong or blank for over a week now. I don't think WBC does 20th century technology never mind 21st 😅.

WBC has had new ticket machines fitted to all of the fleet and they send location information regularly. The old system was not as reliable and worked from Timetable information only. Today Arriva, WBC and some others in Warrington use the same system and it is a requirement made by central government to get bus grant I believe.

Try this link so see a map centred on Warrington Bus Station, you can change where it is centred and the scale, click on a bus for details and see where it is in real time.

Map – bustimes.org

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Looks interesting. I use an app called "UK Bus Checker" which gives expected bus times which is better than the timetables posted at a lot of stops.

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That’s almost the same as what my company provided to the taxi fleets across the country but instead of bus stops it shows where people are, and the colour indicate how long they’ve been waiting. I don’t think I can provide a live link from here, but I’ll see if I can at least get an image later after my shopping. Customers using the taxi systems can also see a similar image on their phone but only their own taxi is visible. The system records absolutely everything from the initial phone call to the final cash or card payments.

The crazy thing is though that even though our systems appear to be more advanced with greater capability, they’re only sold to private taxi companies where the initial cost is the greatest concern. A system similar to this would typically cost less than £5k with a monthly support charge of less than £500 which is probably a bit less than what the council paid out.

Oh and on the garage fire yesterday, a lot thought the very long road closure seemed like an over reaction but speaking in the pub with people from the area last night, it turned out the garage was used for car repairs and possibly had acetylene bottles inside that needed to cool off.

 

Bill 😊

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I managed to lift these images from one of the local taxi companies and it shows just how bad things are for the trade now. There aren’t that many vehicles working and zero people are waiting for their ride.

map1.jpg

map2.jpg

 

 Bill 😊

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I had to queue for a taxi outside the bus station for over 20 minutes one afternoon last week. Normally there's half a dozen waiting for fares.

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Only the Hackney carriages are allowed at the bus station rank but some of these also do work for the private hire companies and at times they do jobs like school contracts which makes them a bit thin on the ground.

The displayed maps show Direct Cars (Warrington) and from memory I think quite a high percentage of their vehicles are Hackney types.

 

Bill 😊

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The fire hoses were connected to hydrants on the south side of the A57 so there were quite a few lay crossing the road. I imagine the road was closed to prevent vehicles driving over them. It was a thick black plume of smoke, could be seen some way off.

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