A ride on Detroit's buses with the new DDOT director - New York News

A ride on Detroit's buses with the new DDOT director

Posted: Updated:
(WJBK) -

Mayor Duggan has pledged to turn around Detroit's bus system. Friday new DDOT director Dan Dirks boarded the bus with FOX 2's Amy LAnge and got an up-close look at the broken buses and frustrated passengers.

VIDEO: Click on the video player above to watch the report
__________

"Yesterday I waited two hours on the Jefferson bus."

"There's not enough buses."

"The man said we can't get on there - he's got to check the brakes."

The complaints are all too common and standing in the middle of them with FOX 2 on Friday was Detroit Department of Transportation's new director, Dan Dirks.

He, too, was waiting for the bus.

"And rightfully so that they are frustrated, but, again, the bottom line is that we have old buses - over nine years old - that many cases haven't been maintained the way they should and we're paying for some past problems," says Dirks.

But those past problems are now his current problems, fixing old buses and looking to lease newer buses.

On Friday 150 to 160 buses were on the streets of Detroit. There should be 227 buses.

Dirks has been riding the buses frequently to get a feel for what passengers and drivers are going through, and many people want to talk to him and tell their stories, offer suggestions and ask for help.

"Most of the folks on our buses are using this to get to work, go to the doctor's office, go to school. That's why it's important for many folks but it's critical for our customers," Dirks tells FOX 2's Amy Lange.

Also important to address is security for passengers and the drivers. With buses as full as they are, anything can happen.

"We have four cameras around the drivers. We have three cameras in the back," district superintendent Ansel Stewart points out. He says eight cameras total are on board that particular bus and are constantly recording.

"Passengers should feel very safe but also, for security reasons for our operators, operators [are going to] to feel safe because they know they have an extra eye on them. As a matter of fact, we have eight extra eyes keeping an eye out for the operators," says Stewart.

Only two buses right now are equipped with the security cameras but they're hoping to have 30 buses outfitted by the end of the month.

In the meantime Detroiters will continue to demand improvements, and Dirks will keep working to make that happen.

"We're just trying everything we can to improve the service as quick as possible," he says.

  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Dead cats found hanging from trees in Yonkers

    Dead cats found hanging from trees in Yonkers

    Thursday, April 24 2014 11:03 PM EDT2014-04-25 03:03:00 GMT
    SPCA of Westchester photoSPCA of Westchester photo
    Police are investigating the discovery of at least two dozen dead cats found inside plastic bags hanging from trees in Yonkers Thursday, according to the SPCA of Westchester. Some of the cats were badly decomposed but others appeared more recently killed.
    Police are investigating the discovery of at least two dozen dead cats found inside plastic bags hanging from trees in Yonkers Thursday, according to the SPCA of Westchester. Some of the cats were badly decomposed but others appeared more recently killed.
  • Some residents return after NJ brush fires force evacuations

    Some residents return after NJ brush fires force evacuations

    Thursday, April 24 2014 10:42 PM EDT2014-04-25 02:42:55 GMT
    A school and many homes in Ocean County, N.J., were evacuated on Thursday afternoon because of several brush fires that were fanned by winds. Some residents returned a few hours later. The largest fires burned about 300 acres around Berkeley Township. Firefighters had about 30 percent contained late Thursday night.
    A school and many homes in Ocean County, N.J., were evacuated on Thursday afternoon because of several brush fires that were fanned by winds. Some residents returned a few hours later. The largest fires burned about 300 acres around Berkeley Township. Firefighters had about 30 percent contained late Thursday night.
  • 'Here Lies Love'

    'Here Lies Love'

    Thursday, April 24 2014 7:33 PM EDT2014-04-24 23:33:22 GMT
    "Here Lies Love" tells the rise and fall of former Philippines first lady Imelda Marcos. History meets disco literally as the story is told in a nightclub.Ruthie Ann Miles plays Marcos. Miles admits a big challenge is bringing to life a woman with views vastly different from her own and giving that to show-goers. "As an actor you believe in yourself," Miles says. "You need to be your own best friend, your own biggest supporter so that the audience can come on a journey with you."
    "Here Lies Love" tells the rise and fall of former Philippines first lady Imelda Marcos. History meets disco literally as the story is told in a nightclub.Ruthie Ann Miles plays Marcos. Miles admits a big challenge is bringing to life a woman with views vastly different from her own and giving that to show-goers. "As an actor you believe in yourself," Miles says. "You need to be your own best friend, your own biggest supporter so that the audience can come on a journey with you."
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices