The costs of deploying Side Object Detection Systems for transit buses include acquisition, training and maintenance costs.

December 15 2008
Cleveland,Ohio,United States; Salt Lake City,Utah,United States; Washington,District of Columbia,United States

Summary Information

Side Object Detection Systems (SODS) for transit buses have the potential to improve transit bus safety by helping operators avoid collisions with side objects. Although transit bus collisions are infrequent, they incur significant repair costs and hurt efficiency, and nearly half (49%) of transit bus collisions occur on the side of the bus. The experience of transit agencies in the deployment of SODS is limited, however, and the value of SODS it is not fully determined or documented. A recent evaluation of a SODS deployment across three different transit agencies does provide insight into the costs and potential benefits of SODS. This deployment of SODS occurred as a result of a U.S. DOT research initiative on collision avoidance technologies referred to as Integrated Vehicle-Based Safety Systems (IVBSS) . The partnering transit agencies purchased the first commercially available SODS in 2004 and an independent evaluation calculated the Return on Investment after performing a comprehensive review.
  • The acquisition and installation costs on a per unit basis were $2,000. (The acquisition of SODS was part of a new bus procurement and included installation; note that retrofits may have higher costs due to installation.)
  • The initial training costs for operators was $14.13 and for mechanics was $15.04.
  • The ongoing costs associated with maintaining SODS were estimated to be $69.86 per bus per year for repairs, and $7.52 per bus per year for SODS testing.

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Side Object Detection System Evaluation: Final Evaluation Report

Author: J. Rephlo, S. Miller, R. Haas, H. Saporta, D. Stock, D. Miller, L. Feast, B. Brown

Published By: USDOT

Source Date: December 15 2008

EDL Number: 14461


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Cost ID: 2010-00200