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Old 25th June 2013, 11:34   #16
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by Ashley2 View Post
Thanks for that pic Ashley.

You can also see the emergency hammers(the red plastic handle) mounted beside the emergency windows.
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Old 25th June 2013, 11:46   #17
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by julupani View Post
Long distance Volvo's have roof top emergency exits too, though I cant seem to remember if its one or two in number. But I guess the roof top exit will only be useful if the bus is on its side, rather than standing up.
There are two hatches on the roof.

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Originally Posted by salilpawar1 View Post
Aren't these meant for getting fresh air inside the bus. They can double up as emergency exits if the bus topples on one side but they are not primarily meant to be emergency exits in the first place.
They are meant to be used for ventilation. I doubt if they can be used as emergency exits because they are too small for the purpose. B11Rs and City Volvos (Both the 8400 and the 7400XL) come with bigger hatches.
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Old 25th June 2013, 12:46   #18
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by julupani View Post
Even with an emergency door, you cannot skip on emergency windows. Just like a frontal collision blocks the front doors, if the bus rolls over to one side, the door can become blocked. In fact, a roll after a frontal collision may mean both doors are blocked.

I think the major issue regarding safety of these buses is not the machine, but the men who operate them. And not just drivers, owners too have to share the blame.
+1 to the above - it is the whole ecosystem which is to be blamed - owners (for compromising on safety when ordering the buses), manufacturers (for succumbing to the demands of the money minded owners), drivers (for abusing the machines without regard to the road conditions in India and for lack of knowledge on how to tackle emergencies) and importantly, the RTOs and regulators who allow registration of these buses and allow them to ply well aware of the safety issues !

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Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
A very close call indeed.

If a fire had started inside the bus, then there would've been many fatalities....like we have seen in the recent car-fire incidents.

Its high time the ARAI get involved in these matters and enforce safety regulations.
Exactly my point - high time regulators do something and for once, implement them !

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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
SRS B9Rs do not have a driver door. Not only SRS, but a lot of operators save on that money too by avoiding having a driver door. KaSRTC, VRL, Kallada (suresh), National are few notable operators who retain the driver door in their buses - so incase of a frontal crash, you have an additional door to your rescue. The driver door doesn't get jammed that quickly because of its design. Even in case of a frontal impact, the doors can be opened - I am not sure of the exact switch to use, but its possible.
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Originally Posted by P4life View Post
As per ECR regulations, the Doors of a Bus/Truck should be open able from outside of the vehicle without considerable effort. Also in some European countries, its mandatory to have a middle door on the side other that the driver side, similar to the ones on the Volvo B11R trial bus. Its is however sad that majority of Indian operators (other than Kasrtc B9r's) opt for the middle door and not even the driver side door, to save money.
Wow, dint realize / observe that most of these Volvos dont even have a driver door ! Thanks for pointing it out.

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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Actually, if you are targetting the correct glass, all you need to do is kick the glass or hit it with baggage. The emergency exit windows are the second from the front and second from the back. Like in aircrafts, its important to play a safety video in these buses too.
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Originally Posted by julupani View Post
But there is an issue with the emergency windows. Volvo does provide a special glass breaking hammer which is generally placed right beside the emergency window. This is a special hammer with an extremely sharp point, which can shatter the glass with one hit. But I have seen this hammer missing from its holder many a times.
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Originally Posted by pratyush6 View Post
Honestly, I have never thought of opening the emergency window and I have never been in a situation. But breaking the window should not be that big a problem.

As pointed out, in case of a roll-over the doors will get jammed. I wonder the emergency windows are on both the sides of a bus (left & right)? And yes, I have seen in a lot many buses that "hammer" thing missing.

Yes, the hammer was missing from the front emergency window and had to be fetched from the rear. trust me, the window did not break easily. Maybe it was poor technique due to lack of awareness on the most effective way to break it, but it did take ~10 mins of hammer time to break it !


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Originally Posted by rjstyles69 View Post
Why add only VOLVO's to the list ? None of the regular buses have a conventional emergency exit. From what I have seen, most of these buses have " Emergency Exit" stickered on the rear windshield . I dont understand how the RTO approves of such buses where there is zilch concern for safety in case of an accident. Take a look at this bus

In case of an emergency, I wonder how people are expected to disembark from that height and it gets even worse when they have 2 ladders at the back.
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Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
A very valid point.

I guess only a fraction of the Volvos were retrofitted.

There are hundreds of private Volvos which lack the emergency doors as well.

This issue needs a very resolved approach from authorities and operators; unless there's regulation, I doubt anyone's going to budge.
+1 to the above


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Originally Posted by julupani View Post
The side emergency exits in Volvos are about 5-5.5feet off the ground. I think it is a reasonable height from where most people will be able to jump from. The small percentage who will find it difficult can easily be helped by other people. Remember, this is an "emergency exit", where comfort is not a priority at all. The idea is to be able to get out.

Long distance Volvo's have roof top emergency exits too, though I cant seem to remember if its one or two in number. But I guess the roof top exit will only be useful if the bus is on its side, rather than standing up.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pratyush6 View Post
Those emergency exits at the back are dangerous. What if someone falls from that? The drop would be about 10 feet (?). How are women, children and elderly expected to behave? The ladder should ideally be long enough (the gap between the ground and the ladder IMO should not be more than 2-3 feet).

But in general, my feel is that travelling in a bus is much more safer than your car.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashley2 View Post
They have two emergency exits at the roof.
Attachment 1101983
Was not aware of the exit on the roof on long distance buses. Have seen this on the BMTC City Volvos.

You are correct - the windows are ~5 feet high. But with a ladder and people assisting, most passengers with the exception of senior citizens / elderly folks can get off without too much of an issue.
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Old 25th June 2013, 13:32   #19
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

What should we do when the hammers are missing? I suppose we have to carry our own hammers along!
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Old 25th June 2013, 13:44   #20
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rjstyles69 View Post
Why add only VOLVO's to the list ? None of the regular buses have a conventional emergency exit. From what I have seen, most of these buses have " Emergency Exit" stickered on the rear windshield . I dont understand how the RTO approves of such buses where there is zilch concern for safety in case of an accident. Take a look at this bus

Attachment 1101963

In case of an emergency, I wonder how people are expected to disembark from that height and it gets even worse when they have 2 ladders at the back.
I might be wrong in this but I guess the last window is actually the emergency exit in this case. Although it has not been demarcated clearly, observe the frame of that window in the attachment; it is pivoted on top for people to get out incase of an emergency:
Attached Images
 
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Old 25th June 2013, 14:10   #21
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by avinash_m View Post
I might be wrong in this but I guess the last window is actually the emergency exit in this case. Although it has not been demarcated clearly, observe the frame of that window in the attachment; it is pivoted on top for people to get out incase of an emergency:
That pivoted window you are talking about was a broken one . They hadn't fixed it properly and the rear wind shield had emergency exit stickered just above the glass on the inside.
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Old 25th June 2013, 14:14   #22
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by Trapezio View Post
What should we do when the hammers are missing? I suppose we have to carry our own hammers along!
You don't really need a hammer for that (provided you are targetting the correct windows). A hard suitcase, or the fire extinguisher present in the bus is enough.

Volvo used to provide a CD containing the safety video with every bus - they have stopped that practice recently since owners started leaving the CD back at the factory itself. That CD has a good explanation about how to break open the glasses, and what all might come to your help in such cases.
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Old 25th June 2013, 14:47   #23
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

This thread is an eye opener. I never realized how disastrous it could be in a fast moving Volvo crashing, and electronics getting disabled leading to lock up.

Also agree wholeheartedly on the sorry and sad state of affairs in our country:
"the whole ecosystem is to be blamed - owners (for compromising on safety when ordering the buses), manufacturers (for succumbing to the demands of the money minded owners), drivers (for abusing the machines without regard to the road conditions in India and for lack of knowledge on how to tackle emergencies) and importantly, the RTOs and regulators who allow registration of these buses and allow them to ply well aware of the safety issues"


We sorely require the stringency and strict regulations applicable for air travel in all means of public transport.
OR Perhaps something like this: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0116630/

Last edited by alpha1 : 25th June 2013 at 14:49.
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Old 25th June 2013, 15:15   #24
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by silversteed View Post
The first priority is to get out of danger. The drop is not 10 feet, but probably 5-6 feet, which is not too high to cause more damage.
Yes, the first priority is getting out of danger. I am specifically talking about the SRS Bus which has an emergency exit as the rear glass - That is not a drop of 5-6 feet for sure.

My point is in trying to get out of danger, one should not get into another form of danger as well.
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Old 25th June 2013, 16:26   #25
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by rjstyles69 View Post
That pivoted window you are talking about was a broken one . They hadn't fixed it properly and the rear wind shield had emergency exit stickered just above the glass on the inside.
Ok, I stand corrected. However, normal buses here in Hyd mostly have the emergency exit (if they do have it) around the last window or the prior one with a horizontal or vertical pivot door. Unfortunately, I don't have pics to support that but that subtle difference (window frame etc) is a sure shot give-away.
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Old 25th June 2013, 16:42   #26
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by binaiks View Post
Volvo used to provide a CD containing the safety video with every bus - they have stopped that practice recently since owners started leaving the CD back at the factory itself. That CD has a good explanation about how to break open the glasses, and what all might come to your help in such cases.


Movie CD's are compulsory but any step towards safety of the passengers are not important. Not many are knowledgeable and don't ask for such CD's to be played at least once from the departure. Many either doze off or are busy on watching the same repeated by-hearted movie.

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Originally Posted by avinash_m View Post
Ok, I stand corrected. However, normal buses here in Hyd mostly have the emergency exit (if they do have it) around the last window or the prior one with a horizontal or vertical pivot door. Unfortunately, I don't have pics to support that but that subtle difference (window frame etc) is a sure shot give-away.
+1.

I have seen the new RTC buses (Tata Marcopolo) have to 'emergency window' stickered on the second window, middle window and the last window of the bus. And for the matter the hammers are placed near the window and some buses have it printed on the doors to as to how to break the window on emergency in both English and the local language.

Cheers,
Anurag.
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Old 25th June 2013, 17:16   #27
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Default re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

The roof hatch works as an exit only if the bus has toppled on its side.

I wonder if other western countries have any kind of safety regulation to address this issue.
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Old 25th June 2013, 19:51   #28
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Default Re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

aroonanand

How was the response of the operator SRS after the accident??? Did the other bus crew and the local operator staff help the passengers after all of you came out of the bus or were you left to your own devices???


I know of at least one case reported in T-BHP , where forget other operators, crew of the buses of the same operator (not SRS) involved in the accident did not bother to stop and help passengers involved , despite some of the passengers being badly injured. How was the response of the emergency services in this case?? Since the driver appears to have been quite badly injured, did highway patrol/ambulances come quickly on the scene???
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Old 25th June 2013, 20:11   #29
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Default Re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
I wonder if other western countries have any kind of safety regulation to address this issue.
You seem to suggest that India cant possibly have any sort of regulation in this issue. If so please see the attached document. Its the bus body code which all buses in India have to go by. There is also a separate code for school buses.And in recent years, it has become mandatory for all bus body builders in India to be accredited, either by the Central Institute for Road Transport or by the ARAI.

In the following code, you can skip to clauses 2.2.4.x to refer to emergency exits. The Indian code seems to be pretty much on par with code of most European nations.
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File Type: pdf AIS-052.pdf (2.98 MB, 3673 views)
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Old 25th June 2013, 20:38   #30
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Default Re: Buses in India: Lack of Emergency Exits, a recipe for disaster?

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Originally Posted by julupani View Post
You seem to suggest that India cant possibly have any sort of regulation in this issue.
I think it is well known that safety regs in the west are generally more stringent than India....be it the rule itself or how strictly it's enforced.
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