The Transport Bureau (DSAT) issued a statement yesterday to deny allegations regarding the existence of “ghost buses”, referring to buses deployed, partially deployed or never deployed, merely to meet minimum shift requirements instead of to take passengers.
Last Sunday, the DSAT and the two bus companies held a joint press conference to explain the former’s decision to cut bus frequency. The government bureau assured the press that special buses will be deployed should bus stops become too crowded.
Just one day later, on the first working day after the change was announced, many bus users reported waiting for 15 to 20 minutes longer than usual.
Meanwhile, another type of so-called “ghost buses” was suspected based on data from the DSAT’s official app.
Chinese newspaper Macao Daily News reported that the app showed a bus one stop away but did not appear at the next stop after 10 minutes. The app then showed the bus had already passed the stop.
In response, the DSAT stressed all bus stops across the city are equipped with radio-frequency identification devices that record operational data. Such data are also verified by a third-party entity.
DSAT disclosed that on August 3, the accuracy rate of route announcement was 97%. The bureau added that the accuracy rate can be affected by operational or network conditions. AL