Passenger safety has a price

A few months ago, I praised what I saw to be a great safety improvement in the way Yarra Trams highlighted doors so that passengers and drivers could see them more easily.

Photo of the new Yarra Trams livery

See how clearly marked the doors were.

As my tram approached this morning, I was a bit surprised to see that the doors on the tram were now positively camouflaged. Can you find the doors on the tram?

Yarra Trams full-body tram advertising

In fact, I was pretty disappointed. To see the tram covered in advertising to the point that the doors were no longer discernible seemed like a massive regression on great progress. Not only that, but it said to me that passenger safety has a price – it is only a priority if advertising dollars cannot be secured.

On the Yarra Trams website, Your new look Yarra Trams (PDF) (published 2010) contains the following:

“To further improve safety all door frames will be enhanced with highly visible yellow vinyl as well as an additional reflective strip. These increase visibility for pedestrians and drivers to improve safety across the network.”

They left out the caveat: …only if we can’t make some money out of them. Shame, Yarra Trams.

customer service

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