Size Matters? Billings MET Thinks Their Bus Is More Important Than Safety
Today while in the downtown bustle, I noticed a train had traffic stopped as usual. One thing that was not usual, and really is unacceptable, is seeing a Billings MET bus blocking the crosswalk (and a "regular" driver, in her fancy new Jeep). Maybe I am overreacting?
What's the issue?
I tend to look at everything from two perspectives. One, from a fully-abled body... and one from the perspective of someone in a wheelchair. Why? In school, my best friend for many years was bound to a wheelchair, which in Miles City, limited the possible spots for him to visit (due to accessibility inconsistencies).
Can't you just go around it?
Sure, a bus blocking the crosswalk isn't a BIG deal for someone who can just walk around it. Someone in a wheelchair, especially the heavy electric-powered ones, can't exactly just go over a curb and around the bus. Instead, they would have to enter the road from the other sidewalk ramp and be in traffic to go around the bus. Not safe at all.
Why was the bus blocking it?
What's funny to me is seeing not one, but TWO MET buses back to back. There was enough room in front of the second bus to pull ahead and unblock the crosswalk mostly, however they did not do that. Nor did the regular driver. It's a shame to see people be in such a hurry, and not care about others.
Keep in mind, I am extremely happy to live in a city with public transit. I DO wish it was better, as someday I'd like to move toward not even owning a car... but what we have is far nicer than many other cities.
In the event you wish to argue, I turn you to this within the Montana Code:
For the regular driver who just blocked it, purely because they were not paying attention... a simple shame on you.
For the MET Bus Driver who knows better, being on these roads each and every day... a big SHAME on you. Maybe someday you should look at this from the perspective I mentioned above... and you won't block access in the future.