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USA UK and Malta News
31/07/2012 - 23:11

Malta news: Arriva fails is SMS service


Malta news: Arriva fails is SMS service, the SMS service which was supposed to have been launched this month by public transport operator Arriva has been postponed yet again, while the IT system which was intended to be up and running as from day one of the service a year ago is still in the testing phase.



Malta news: Arriva fails is SMS service
The SMS service which was supposed to have been launched this month by public transport operator Arriva has been postponed yet again, while the IT system which was intended to be up and running as from day one of the service a year ago is still in the testing phase. These services are crucial to ensure punctuality, which is still a major source of complaints by commuters. In an interview published by this newspaper on 20 May, Arriva interim managing director David Kaye had promised that the company was due to launch an innovative SMS service through which commuters can receive real-time information on their mobile phones. He had also stated that the network changes which were coming into force a week later would fine-tune the service to meet customers’ expectations while thrashing out any lingering issues. Apart from the fact that two months down the line, the level of the service is still not up to the standards promised a year ago, some of the improvements registered in the first year seem to be seriously in jeopardy. In its first year of operations, it was widely acknowledged that Arriva had successfully managed to improve the general appearance of bus drivers as well as their etiquette, which was previously a frequent source of complaints. However, following a recent industrial dispute with the General Workers’ Union, drivers are no longer wearing ties on the pretext of the current hot weather. While such an argument might be justified in cases where drivers are using buses with no air-condition on board, the situation right now is that all bus drivers are being allowed with their shirts wide open. At the same time several drivers seem eager to put Arriva’s reputation to the test either by their remarks to passengers or with their behaviour. Such acts include smoking cigars on the bus, doing their natural needs in public places or passing sexist remarks to passengers, especially foreign students studying English in the summer months. If no action is taken to curb such abuses, there is a real risk of a throwback to the previous service. Frequent users of the bus service said that they have given up hope filing complaints to the company’s customer care service as no noticeable improvement was observed. They remarked that the local bus operator should seriously consider publishing a list of complaints it has received so far and state the action taken, if it really wants to show it means business. Questions sent by this newspaper yesterday morning to Arriva regarding these issues were left unanswered at the time of print.(independent.com.mt) Communication is becoming more important in the life of every day, this is a perfect example.








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