There is a certain happiness sighted when your bus comes along. It is of course a small specialized form of happiness and will never be a great thing.

-Richard Brautigan, The Old Bus

Friday, July 20, 2007

Emergency, Call 911

Well, I had to ask, so I asked Officer Michelle over at the SacPD blog:

Dear Michelle, Wednesday, I was walking west on Capitol Ave. around 24 Street and I saw an RT bus traveling east with "Emergency, Call 911" on the front message sign where the route is normally displayed and "Call 911" on the back where the route number normally shows.

I watched the bus stop and let someone off and then let someone on. If it was having an emergency, it wasn’t evident.

Do the buses have "panic" buttons that trigger this sort of display?

And should I have called 911 when I saw the bus sign say "Emergency, Call 911"?

Dear Jhughes,
You are very observant! There are panic triggers on the busses which automatically change the front message to "Emergency, Call 911," and the RT radio control is automatically notified. You are urged to call 911 when this happens. If it is a false alarm, the driver will notify RT via radio. Way to go!

Officer Michelle
So next time I'll know.


Queen of Dysfunction said...

So... did she say why it would read that? Very odd.

John said...

Since the bus wasn't careening through traffic and it did stop and drop off and pick up passengers while I was watching, I'm going to _assume_ a malfunction on the bus and not a hostage situation. (This wasn't a scene from the movie Speed.)

Personally, I'm not sure I would board a bus that had a flashing "Emergency, Call 911" sign, even if the driver said it was all a mistake.