Purpose

To consolidate, disseminate, and gather information concerning the 710 expansion into our San Rafael neighborhood and into our surrounding neighborhoods. If you have an item that you would like posted on this blog, please e-mail the item to Peggy Drouet at pdrouet@earthlink.net

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Pushing TBM design limits under Lake Mead

http://www.tunneltalk.com/Lake-Mead-04Sep2014-Pushing-TBM-design-limits-in-Nevada-USA.php

By Peter Kenyon, September 3, 2014

(Facebook comment:  The next time you hear Metro, Caltrans or one of their consultants say that they know what they are doing and that the problems encountered with Bertha in Seattle are atypical and won't be made with the SR-710 tunnels, think about this article. It's not about a roadway tunnel, but is about the unpredictability of tunneling with a TBM even when you have done your homework and think you understand what will be encountered.)

The race to complete the Lake Mead deep intake No. 3 tunnel in Nevada, USA, is, put simply, the story of a TBM being pushed beyond its design limitations to get the job done before the desert city of Las Vegas, quite literally, runs dry. Peter Kenyon of TunnelTalk speaks to Vegas Tunnel Constructors Project Manager Jim Nickerson for the contractor, and South Nevada Water Authority Project Manager Erika Moonin for the client, about an extreme drive through worse than anticipated ground under hydrostatic pressures that have so far reached 15 bar. 
 
Right from the start, in 2010, nothing has been simple about the hard-fought 4,500m TBM drive at Lake Mead. This has never been more true than during the last 18 months – a turbulent period marked by spurts of rapid open mode progress, followed by frustratingly slow advances in closed mode through worse than anticipated ground conditions. Water inflows have been recorded at rates of up to 3,000 gal/min (226 liter/sec) at an applied pressure of 10 bar, the equivalent of approximately 12-18,000 gal/min inflow at normal atmospheric pressure.

View from above as crews repair the damaged cutterhead in a hand-excavated niche ahead of the face
View from above as crews repair the damaged cutterhead in a hand-excavated niche ahead of the face
Since March 2013 the already delayed project – now scheduled for substantial completion in Summer next year (2015) and commissioned in December 2015 or January 2016 – has suffered a number of further TBM-related delays, including:
  • A seven-week stop to excvate by hand a niche in the face to carry out repair and replacement of heavily worn cutter disks and repair substantial damage to the cutterhead itself (March-April 2013)
  • A six-week stop to excavate a 1.5m deep cavern in the face and to the full diameter of the TBM to carry out a full bearing seal replacement (December 2013-January 2014), and
  • Two stops for a total of about six weeks to repair broken pinions on the bearings bullgear (May 2014 and August 2014)
All the while, lake levels have been dropping, and at 1,081ft (25ft lower than when TunnelTalk last reported on the project in 2013) there is now only 31ft of leeway before the existing intake No. 1 and pumping station will cease to operate at 1,050ft. SWNA completed critical remedial measures in 2013 to try to ensure a water supply down to an extra 10ft of lake elevation, from 1,060ft to 1,050ft, but cannot be certain how successful this will be. To put all this into context, lake levels are predicted to reach a critical level of 1,067ft in Summer next year (2015) – just 17ft above the current intake No.1 and at a time when full commissioning of the new deep level tunnel and intake structure is scheduled to be still five months away.

'Tide' marks at Lake Mead are mineral deposits on rock that was once underwater
'Tide' marks at Lake Mead are mineral deposits on rock that was once underwater
The dual mode Herrenknecht machine procured for the vitally important project (Las Vegas receives 90% of its water from Lake Mead) ­is designed to operate under a maximum hydrostatic pressure of 17 bar. Operating under extreme water pressure in highly variable ground conditions was always a major concern for the whole length of the alignment, but especially once the TBM advanced out under the waters of Lake Mead from beneath Saddle Island about a third of the way into the drive.

The machine, however, despite being well equipped to deal with just about every eventuality expected from a drive carried out under such testing conditions, was never designed to cope with so much operation in closed mode. According to Jim Nickerson, Project Manager for Vegas Tunnel Constructors, the design-life expectancy for closed mode operation of the Lake Mead TBM was stated at just 30% of the project’s alignment length, or about 1,500m in total. To date 1,830m has been excavated in closed mode, and a large proportion of the remaining 1,000m may well also have to be performed in closed mode, including the last 150m (450ft) section into the concrete intake structure. It is not beyond the realms of possibility that by the time the drive is finished the contractor team will have exceeded the recommended maximum distance in closed mode by 100% or more.

Lake Mead TBM readied for its drive under the lake
Lake Mead TBM readied for its drive under the lake
“This machine was never designed to do this much tunnelling in closed mode,” said Nickerson. “Herrenknecht only recommended closed mode mining with this TBM to a distance of 1,500m, in line with our original specification for the job. Operating for so long in closed mode has been technically challenging and there is a lot of maintenance to perform.” As TunnelTalk went to press the contractor team was anxiously trying to locate ground conducive to open mode mining following a continuous run of closed mode operations since May (2014).

Oct 2012-May 2013: Major cutterhead repair

The full extent of the geological and hydrological challenges that would face the contractor team and the client became evident following successful completion of a three-and-a-half month grouting program in December 2012.

Having operated in closed mode for much of the opening 457m of the drive, the contractor was concerned about excessive wear to the cutter disks, and the state of the cutterhead in general, and needed, preferably, to plan a free air inspection intervention to enable an external examination of the cutterhead. This was achieved, but fractured ground conditions throughout the grouted zone made it impossible to perform maintenance as planned. A decision was made to drive through the fractured heading in the hope of finding more stable ground. None was found within the grouted zone, and the fractured nature of the rock lessened the immediate risk of further damage to the cutterhead and cutting tools.
TBM configuration in open mode
TBM configuration in open mode
Lake Mead TBM readied for its drive under the lake
TBM configuration in closed mode
Having operated in closed mode for much of the opening 457m of the drive, the contractor was concerned about excessive wear to the cutter disks, and the state of the cutterhead in general, and needed, preferably, to plan a free air inspection intervention to enable an external examination of the cutterhead. This was achieved, but fractured ground conditions throughout the grouted zone made it impossible to perform maintenance as planned. A decision was made to drive through the fractured heading in the hope of finding more stable ground. None was found within the grouted zone, and the fractured nature of the rock lessened the immediate risk of further damage to the cutterhead and cutting tools.

“We mined forward for maybe a week after passing through the grouted zone and then, all of a sudden, we began to see metal showing up on our separation plant magnet,” explained Nickerson for VTC. “We went forward three further strokes and then finally stopped, 587m into the drive, figuring we were going to do one of two things – either a saturation dive or another long grouting campaign.
“At this stage we performed a piezometric test by measuring the inflow slurry circuit and the outflow slurry circuit, enabling us to measure the quantity of water we were taking in as the operating pressure was slowly decreased. We found we were able to get down to normal atmospheric pressure after all, but we had to contend with a 4,000 gal/min (300 liter/sec) water inflow rate.”

Work began immediately on changing the cutters from outside the cutterhead, but once crews were able to inspect the centre section they found the disks could not be removed. “After further investigation we found that the whole centre of the cutterhead was worn all the way into the structure. The disk cutters were more than half gone, and the wear plates had worn through and there was approximately 8in of metal loss into the structure of the cutterhead and the disk cutter housings. So now we were confronted with a very large structural repair of the cutterhead while at the same time also being faced with all this water,” recalled Nickerson.

Lake Mead intake no.3 alignment
Lake Mead intake no.3 alignment
“The only way to complete the repair was to go out in front and excavate a niche into the face, and work on this started on April 1, 2013. Once the niche was excavated we then diverted the water inflows down to the invert to create a perfectly dry area to facilitate a structural repair, using induction heating to assist in the process. Herrenknecht technicians were here advising with the work being done on site and under their guidance we completed the excavation of the niche and the repairs to the cutterhead itself on May 15, 2013.”

Despite the setback, Nickerson admitted the team had been lucky. “This was the only section of ground in the whole of the upper plate in Saddle Island that was even given consideration for a stop. We made three pushes from the place where we performed the cutterhead repair and we saw more water then we’d ever seen up to that date. If we hadn’t stopped where we did the job would have been in a very difficult situation. We’d have ended up having to complete another 3-4 month grouting campaign and hope for the best - and contractors typically don’t like to use the word ‘hope.’ ”

Segments await gantry lowering into 18m deep shaft at the launch site
Segments await gantry lowering into 18m deep shaft at the launch site
“If conditions had forced us to complete the repair as a saturation event it would probably have taken more than a year. To give you an example on decompression, it doesn't matter if you are out there for 10 minutes or a whole day, it would take five-and-a-half days to decompress. The thought of carrying out a saturation at these pressures is very risky in our view and it was only ever to be carried out as a last resort.”

To date no hyperbaric intervention has been necessary, but the contractor is well prepared in the event it becomes so – and has stored on the job site a large amount of Heliox gas and other associated equipment for working in a high pressure environment.

June 2013-Feb 2014: Replacing the main bearing seal

Following successful completion of the cutterhead repairs in mid-May (2013), the team drove the TBM a further 400m in closed mode. In August 2013 the machine was stopped for two weeks to commission the open mode systems and conveyor ahead of breaking into the Muddy Creek Formation. This commissioning should have taken place at the very start of the drive but could not because the TBM had been operated from the outset in closed mode due to start up logistics and adverse ground conditions that saw two inundation events at the launch site and the need to realign the starter tunnel at the very beginning of the drive.

Inspecting the first ring of the tunnel
Inspecting the first ring of the tunnel
Nickerson said: “Progress then went very well in open mode, and we were able to mine almost continuously through to 1,175m (an advance of 195m), before switching back into closed mode due to ground conditions for another 152m or so, and out to 1,280m. We then switched back to open mode and mined in this manner between August 2013 through to December 2013, at which point we then got into closed mode mining conditions again, at high pressure.” Typically, explained Nickerson, closed mode excavation has been carried out in the range of 12-14.5 bar, with a short section in June-July 2013 reaching a project record 15 bar pressure.

It was around the turn of the year 2013-2014 that the contractor found metal shavings in the lube oil circuit, prompting the contractor to stop and investigate the origin of the problem and to consult with Herrenknecht in January. The diagnosis was a possible main bearing seal failure –to advance further would have risked catastrophic damage to the main bearing itself. Again the contractor was in luck, with the machine in open mode and in competent ground a repair was once again possible at normal atmospheric pressure. Work began excavating a 1.5m deep cavern ahead of the face so as to be able to slide the cutterhead forward and enable access to the main bearing seal assembly behind it.

Performing repairs on the drive motor pinions
Performing repairs on the drive motor pinions
“We were very fortunate that we stopped in time,” said Nickerson. “Our inspection showed a failure between the grease seal and the lubrication seal. What we saw prior to this inspection being possible, was cross-contamination of grease in our oil – that was what made us stop in the first place. Had we kept going then all the seals could have failed and we would have probably been in a situation like the SR99 Alaskan Way Project [in Seattle] with a total seal replacement and a main bearing replacement to consider. That would have been very difficult to contend with – obviously we can’t excavate a shaft in front of the machine like they have been able to.”

The remedial work involved boring an invert at the base of the cavern in front of the TBM and then setting up a rail system to slide the cutterhead forward 1.5m. Nickerson explained: “We removed all the plates and all the seals and then replaced them. Again, Herrenknecht engineers were on site.”

March-June 2014: Pinion bearing failure

After restarting the drive in February this year (2014), and following a number of further mode switches, another problem soon presented itself. “During a run in closed mode we started seeing metal showing up in our lubrication system at which point we had to stop to pull off all our gear boxes, motors, pinion gear housings, and then remove the pinion gears where we found the problem was with the pinion gear bearings, which all had to be replaced,” said Nickerson.

At the time of this failure, in closed mode, the team relied on the added protection of an inflatable seal system built into the TBM to cover just this sort of eventuality.

“We were able to do this work [on the pinion gears] in this location, and while operating in closed mode, for one reason only – an emergency seal located inside the machine’s cascade system that was able to inflate.”

“Inside the sealing mechanism of the on-board cascade system we have on this machine - which is itself pretty unique because of the high pressure the TBM was built to withstand – and situated between our two forward chambers, we have an additional inflatable seal,” said Nickerson. “While it’s not uncommon to have an emergency seal, it is unusual to have one working at these pressures. The emergency seal is an insurance policy to be used when the TBM is in stand-by condition, and is inflated so that if the front seals fail, it would prevent water and material from getting to the main bearing and into the tunnel.”

July-Sept 2014: A second pinion bearing failure

Six tunnel segments, which form a ring and 1.8m of progress, on a flat car for a ride to the tunnel heading
Six tunnel segments, which form a ring and 1.8m of progress, on a flat car for a ride to the tunnel heading
After completion of the repairs in June, excavation resumed in closed mode at 12 bar pressure, but on August 2 the contractor was faced with a second pinion gear bearing failure which required redeployment of the inflatable emergency sealing system and another two-week stoppage. Since the latest repair work was completed, in mid-August, the drive has been continuing at high pressure in closed mode to the point that the contractor is now just under 1,000m from the intake structure under Lake Mead. After continuously advancing in closed mode since the time of the first pinion bearing failure in May the team is anxious to find an area suitable for operating in open mode, but the opportunity to do so has not yet presented itself.

The next major challenge on the project will be connection with the concrete intake structure that was built two years ago. “We expect to start mobilizing for connection in November and December, with work starting in January 2015,” said Nickerson. “When we get to the intake we are docking into concrete – the concrete will probably be the best geological condition we see on the job.”

All that remains of an initial 2,500 x 6 segment stacks
All that remains of an initial 2,500 x 6 segment stacks
Despite all the challenges that have been faced, contractor and client alike agree that the key to getting to within an ace of successful completion of tunnelling has been cooperation at every stage. Approximately US$55 million, so far, has been compensated to VTC by SWNA in the form of change orders – some US$40 million of that relates to recovery of the starter tunnel when it flooded and a realignment was deemed necessary. A further US$13 million was compensated for the long closed mode run of 2012 and the subsequent damage to the cutterhead.

“Both sides have been fair and reasonable with each other [as regards change orders]. One of the other things we have in the contract is an allowance item where client and contractor can share some of the unknowns like grouting and hyperbaric intervention, and we have paid some of that allowance out. This has given the contractor a little bit of comfort level that there is some additional money in the contract should they overrun on grouting and so on,” said Moonin for SNWA.

Nickerson added: “The biggest and most important thing is that with all these difficulties, and forgetting about the money, this job has always been about finishing this technically demanding project. The biggest story here is how a contractor and a client work together to get through these difficult points of the project and strive to have one focus, and that is to complete this job.”

References

The Traffic Lights of Tomorrow Will Actively Manage Congestion

The humble traffic signal is gaining some new responsibilities.

 http://www.citylab.com/commute/2014/09/the-traffic-lights-of-tomorrow-will-actively-manage-congestion/379950/

By Keith Barrry, September 11, 2014


 Image



Drive your Model T through a major intersection a hundred years ago, and you'd likely encounter a policeman directing traffic. Ten years later, that officer would've been replaced by a traffic light. As the number of cars on the road increased, cities needed a way to keep cars from crashing into each other. With its dogmatic procession of green, yellow, and red, the automated traffic light did the trick.

A few adjustments were made in the decades that followed, such as pedestrian-walk sensors, but the basic concept remained the same: Signals were for safety's sake. But today's traffic engineers are starting to give the humble signal new responsibilities—programming them to not only react to the flow of traffic, but also to predict driver behavior. The signals of the not-so-distant future may help cities cut congestion without adding lanes or building new roads.

A glimpse into this future begins in Utah, home to one of the most advanced state-wide traffic signal systems in the United States. Traffic planners have long used historical data to create signal plans that optimize "green time" to improve traffic flow, with sophisticated systems using different plans for different times or day or sensors to detect certain vehicles waiting at a light. In most places, these signal plans are revised every three to five years, but the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) can adjust nearly any signal in the state within 30 seconds.

The system is possible thanks to the state's superior infrastructure. Spurred by the 2002 Winter Olympics, Utah began connecting traffic signals across the state using a fiberoptic network installed in partnership with utility companies. Today, UDOT has data from over a thousand closed-circuit cameras, and can remotely control over 80 percent of the traffic lights in the state.

Mark Taylor, signal engineer for UDOT, clearly sees Utah as a template that other states should follow. "Our senior managers here understand the huge benefit-to-cost ratio that really good signal-timing gives," he said. "You just can't get that building roads or building other infrastructure." Indeed, he estimates that money spent on signaling can pay back at a ratio of 40 to 1—not surprising considering that waiting in traffic saps as much as $120 billion each year from the U.S. economy, mostly due to lost productivity.

Of course, regardless of the benefits, most cities and towns can't rely on a top-down, statewide signal interface, because it's expensive to build and labor-intensive to operate. That's where Stephen Smith comes in. A professor at the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, he researches artificial intelligence, and is currently working with the city of Pittsburgh to install the first city-wide network of "smart" traffic signals.

Instead of using humans to monitor and react to traffic flow, the new signals use radar sensors and cameras to detect traffic, and sophisticated algorithms to instantly adjust signals based on real-time conditions. "Each intersection builds a plan that optimizes local traffic flow," says Smith. "Once it does that, it communicates its outflows to its downstream neighbors."

Smart traffic signals, like this one deployed in the East Liberty neighborhood of Pittsburgh, can monitor and react to traffic flow.
Smith's team installed nine smart signals back in 2012 and saw instant results. Travel times along the corridor with the new signals were reduced by 25 percent, idle time fell by 40 percent, and vehicle emissions dropped by 20 percent. The system is also scalable for cash-strapped cities, says Smith, because you can install the signals one intersection at a time as funding becomes available. By the end of this year, Pittsburgh will have 49 smart signals.

Artificial traffic management is an impressive feat, but the Holy Grail of signal planning is a light that stems congestion before it even starts. Carolina Osorio is working toward that goal at MIT. An assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering, Osorio creates elaborate computer models of traffic flows to predict how drivers will behave, including how they will react to changes in signal patterns.

For instance, common sense might lead some cities to create signal plans that prioritize traffic flow along main arteries. But Osorio says such plans might eventually lead to more congestion, as drivers flock to a newly decongested road through a process known as induced demand. "If I decrease travel times along an arterial, it might become an interesting path for people who didn't used to take it," she said.

Osorio's algorithms can also automatically program signals to react to particular issues that a city prioritizes—such as improving pedestrian flow, or preventing traffic from "spilling back" onto highway ramps. Whatever a city's priorities, Osorio's models create signal plans that achieve them. And thanks to apps and navigation systems that feature real-time traffic data, Osorio can now study how a driver might react when her navigation system alerts her to congestion ahead.
"You now have actual real-time maps of how traffic conditions are changing throughout the city," she says. "Hence, we're developing better understanding of what conditions you're reacting to."

Eventually, traffic signals won't have to predict traffic flow at all. Instead, they'll be able to simply ask cars where they're going, and change plans accordingly. So-called vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication uses dedicated short-range communication technology that lets cars "talk" to each other and to traffic signals.

A V2V-compatible signal could relieve congestion by prioritizing emergency vehicles, large groups of concertgoers, or a behind-schedule bus that's loaded with riders. It could also let drivers know which roads have the most green lights. According to the Department of Transportation, V2V compatibility could be standard on all new cars as soon as 2017.

Audi is already testing prototype vehicles that inform drivers when lights are about to change. Called Traffic Light Assist, the system can even tell a driver to slow down or speed up to make a light, all in the name of reducing congestion and vehicle emissions. According to the German automaker, the technology may be commercialized soon.

In the (slightly) more distant future, when vehicles become fully autonomous, the familiar red, yellow, and green lights may even become a historical curiosity, as vehicles themselves decide when to stop and when to go. But for now, the humble traffic signal is holding it down as one of the best ways to reduce congestion.

Port truck drivers seek support from a city pension board

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-mo-port-truckers-dispute-20140909-story.html

By James Rainey, September 9, 2014


Trucks at Port of Los Angeles
 Trucks line up at the Port of Los Angeles. Port truck drivers want managers for the city's biggest pension system to examine their investment in a trucking company they say illegally fired them when the drivers pressed their claim for back wages.

Port truck drivers on Tuesday told the managers of the biggest pension system for the city of Los Angeles that they should closely examine their investment in a trucking company that they claim illegally fired them when the drivers pressed their claim for back wages.

 The drivers' appearance before the board for the Los Angeles City Employees’ Retirement System, known as LACERS, was one in a series of protests they plan to make to try to get concessions from Total Transportation Services Inc., which has been locked in a battle with several dozen of its employees. Two other large pension systems — for police and firefighters in L.A. and for state employees — also have investments linked to the trucking company.

At least 33 drivers said they were fired when they refused to drop claims with the state Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. The agency found that 14 of the drivers were effectively employees of Compton-based Total Transportation, even though they were treated like independent contractors. It also found that excessive payroll deductions and unpaid waiting and break time deprived the workers of nearly $1 million in pay.

The drivers and a representative of the Teamster’s union addressed the pension board Tuesday because LACERS has an estimated $8 million invested with Saybrook, a West Los Angeles-based firm that, in turn, is an investor in the trucking firm.

The public pension plan has an “investment risk” because the trucking company is a repeat violator of labor relations laws, said Barbara Maynard,  spokesperson for the Teamster’s Justice for Port Drivers campaign. Maynard accused Total Transportation of “repeatedly harassing, threatening, intimidating and now firing drivers as retaliation for attempting to form their union.”

 The committee governing the LACERS pension system, which manages retirement funds for 42,000 current and former city employees, said it would take up the investment issue and the drivers’ complaints next week.

Jonathan Rosenthal, a principal in Saybrook investment and board chairman of the trucking company, called the allegation that Total Transportation tried to force workers to drop their wage claims “categorically false.”

When asked why some truckers are no longer driving for Total Transportation, Rosenthal said some had left because the company is transitioning to a new arrangement — no longer leasing trucks to drivers but requiring, instead, that they supply their own trucks and equipment.

“TTSI is very thoughtful in the way they treat all of their independent operators and their staff,” Rosenthal said. He said the biggest issue for truck drivers now in the port is crowding and long waits, making it difficult for drivers to deliver the number of loads they need to generate adequate income.
“We want to be part of a bigger solution to the issues at the port,” Rosenthal said.

Drivers said that the company has been far from the reasonable partner depicted by management.  Jose Rosales Romero told the LACERS pension board Tuesday that when he visited the company to learn about a new financing program for his truck, a manager started screaming obscenities and telling him, “There are no rules and no laws. No law or politicians will help you.”

Teamsters spokeswoman Maynard said that the trucking firm is in danger of being banned from doing business with the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach if it did not adhere to wage rules. That, she said, would put the pension system’s investment at “great risk.”

Another 16 wage claims against Total Transportation are pending before the state agency. Along with the 14 cases in which the company was already found liable for back pay, Total Transportion faces a liability of $4.8 million, the drivers said.

Rosenthal said Total Transportation will appeal the lost claims in Superior Court.

Romero asked the pension board to pressure Saybrook, and therefore Total Transportation, “to stop this illegal behavior.” The driver said that action by the board would show “ports here in L.A. and across America … that they can't keep breaking the law and stay in business.”

Farm animals ride Metrolink to L.A. County Fair

http://www.dailynews.com/lifestyle/20140910/farm-animals-ride-metrolink-to-la-county-fair

September 10, 2014



 

 From left, Dave Shivers, Dustin Kerley and Sky Shivers exit a Metrolink train on Wednesday with two lambs and a chicken at the Fairplex station in Pomona..

It’s not every day you see animals at a train station, but on Wednesday at Union Station in Los Angeles that’s exactly what riders saw.

The animals were there to ride the train to the Los Angeles County Fair in Pomona and that’s just what they did.

Two lambs and a chicken boarded a Metrolink train in Los Angeles and rode to the Fairplex station in Pomona, where they stopped about 11 a.m.

Metrolink makes extra weekend stops on the San Bernardino Line at the Fairplex station during the L.A. County Fair. The Wednesday train ride for the critters was intended to show the public the ease in taking public transportaion the Fair, according to a Metrolink news release.

This year, Metrolink is operating an additional late-night train to Union Station on the weekends from the Fair. The late-night Metrolink service is funded by Metro.

 

 Laura Nelson of Silverlake takes a photo of, from left, Dustin Kerley, Dave Shivers and Sky Shivers along with their baby animals aboard a Metrolink train at Union Station bound for Fairplex in Pomona on Wednesday.

SEPTA launches passenger etiquette campaign

http://www.metro-magazine.com/news/story/2014/09/septa-launches-passenger-etiquette-campaign.aspx?ref=Express-Thursday-NEW-20140911&utm_campaign=Express-Thursday-NEW-20140911&utm_source=Email&utm_medium=Enewsletter

September 11, 2014







 The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) launched its new “Dude It's Rude” passenger etiquette campaign. The new initiative takes a direct approach in an effort to get riders thinking about their own personal travel habits.

Prior to the campaign, SEPTA tackled the issue of passenger etiquette through campaigns that either addressed general behaviors or specific areas of concern using a lighter approach with cartoon-like characters. Soon after, a cellphone use campaign was developed, customers positively responded to the cellphone use program materials, which combined humor with direct messaging. Based on that experience, SEPTA decided to take a more direct approach in its revised passenger etiquette campaign and created the Dude It's Rude Program.

The new program attempts to reform customer travel habits that have continuously been reported as big problems for specific service modes including taking trash with them, watching their language and blocking the front aisle.

Using strong visuals and minimal words, the new campaign purposely takes an edgier tone. SEPTA intentionally did not include its name or logo on decals and posters to get customers thinking more about the messages instead of who is delivering it.

Dude It's Rude ads have been appearing at the bottom of SEPTA's public timetables for the past 12-plus months. The launch commemorates expansion of the program to decals, posters and digital messaging on SEPTA vehicles.