Q’UBE Case Study: Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART)
DART Assures that Wheelchair Securements are Always Available, Yet Never in the Way
Few things are as frustrating to a bus operator or wheelchair passenger as discovering that securement equipment they both assumed was on the bus is instead missing. Perhaps tie-downs were taken to another bus, taken out for repair or simply taken. Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) found a simple and cost-effective way to put an end to this unacceptable inconvenience. The agency is well underway with the outfitting of 400 buses with the Q’UBE integrated securement solution from Q’Straint.
“One of the great benefits of the Q’UBE for us is that it is self-contained and can be bolted directly to the floor or out of the way between seat legs” said Chester Hall, DART’s Assistant Manager for Training and Development.
Besides the increased assurance that important equipment once installed is going to stay installed, Hall says that DART is realizing other important improvements with the first Q’UBE stations installed on their buses: “Easy access, a quick tie-down and schedule adherence. We’re talking about saving a good minute to two minutes per stop.”
As Hall explains, securement with Q’UBE is virtually automatic and error-free. “All the operator has to do is latch the passenger in and tell them to roll back, and the Q’UBE automatically locks in,” says Hall. “The operator doesn’t have to crawl down to get back behind the chair to make sure the straps are tightening down. It automatically locks itself.” This single-lever mechanical delay system, “makes securement more convenient for the operators, making it more likely that they’ll do it right rather than not doing it at all.”
all says making this important task easier for operators pays off in other ways as well. “We figured that securement issues cause a lot of operator frustration and frustration leads to unsatisfied customers and leads, at some point, to accidents,” he says. “If you can make a schedule that an operator could easily adhere to, then you’re going to have a much calmer operator. He’s going to be your best representative because you’ve made his job much easier. He’s less frustrated, better able to deal with the traffic, better able to deal with customers on a more professional level.”
Adds Hall: “With the Q’UBE, the tie-down procedure makes the operator more confident that he can avoid delays and maintain a schedule. Therefore he’s going to be a better employee.”
Passengers, in turn, respond favorably to consistent quality of service, says Hall. “It gives the customer confidence that they can safely and reliably get to their appointments on time.”
“Technology that makes the operator’s job easier and reduces frustration means that drivers can comfortably deal with customers, traffic and other things out of their control. The Q’UBE is definitely going to help us out.”
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