FOI request detail

Audio recording on London Buses

Request ID: FOI-4324-1718
Date published: 26 February 2018

You asked

I would like to know if London Bus Operators : 1. Are using audio recording inside the buses? 2. There are any audio recording devices placed in the driver's cab of the buses? If so: 1. What are the recordings used for? 2. Is this a contractual obligation from you to London Bus Operators?

We answered

Our Ref:          FOI-4324-1718 / FOI-4326-1718 / FOI-4327-1718 / FOI-4336-1718

Thank you for your requests received on 30 January 2018 asking for information about bus operations.

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our information access policy. I can confirm we do hold the information you require. You asked:

1. Are using audio recording inside the buses?

No, the CCTV systems we specify are visual only but operators could choose to add audio if they meet legal requirements in the future.

2. There are any audio recording devices placed in the driver's cab of the buses?

No, there are no recording devices in the driver’s cab.

If so:

1. What are the recordings used for?
2. Is this a contractual obligation from you to London Bus Operators?

Please see above.

There is city and guilds course provided to London Bus drivers.

1. Can we know how this is funded? Who pays for these courses?
2. When is a bus driver expected to undertake these courses?

We specify that new bus drivers must acquire a bespoke City & Guild qualification within one year of starting jobs in London, working on TfL contracted services. The cost of this is built into route contracts by private operators so we cannot split this out and give an actual cost across each operator.

Are there any compensation to London Bus Operators when there is an industrial action by the trade union Unite.

Unite had taken only two days industrial actions across London. Bus operators are paid by the mileage operated. Did bus operators receive any payment for mileage not operated?

No, they are contracted to deliver scheduled mileage operated as part of the contract arrangement they enter into with TfL. They are not paid for scheduled mileage they are unable to operate for reasons within their control such as driver and vehicle availability.

Please, can you tell me what the Bus operators and TfL guidelines are in regards to bus drivers getting lost in route?
When a bus driver is lost on a bus route with passengers what is the protocol.

If drivers get lost, they should call our central command and control centre, CentreComm, or their operator control centres to get immediate advice on directions. Drivers also have route learning prior to driving on particular routes to minimise the risk of getting lost.

Are bus drivers allowed to reverse without assistance?

Yes, where it is safe to do so.

Is there a requirement that bus drivers must have assistance by an official of the company/ or TfL when reversing a bus?

If there are any significant operational concerns around safety, the bus driver can contact CentreComm or their operator’s control centre for advice.

If this is not the information you are looking for please feel free to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.

Yours sincerely

Gemma Jacob
FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

[email protected]

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