Yeah feels like the hybrids came in in Ken’s time and have been fleetwide for a while. I do like it when it’s coasting on the electric, nice and quiet.
You used to get the occasional London bus in Manchester that had been grabbed by one of the many many companies running too many busses up Oxford Road. They would screw plates in over the join of the exit doors in case of the driver accidentally using them
Actually easy just to not notice entirely because you got used to not expecting it. Occasionally they wouldn’t recover the seats so seeing the LT pattern was the giveaway.
I recall one time saying to a (northern) mate that if they had the extra set of doors why not just use them and his claim was, “People would just go in there and not pay,” which was obviously a bit baffling to me given it didn’t really happen in London but hey…
London buses have the two doors due to passenger numbers and passenger flow, which isn’t needed as much on buses in other cities.
The other consideration is passenger safety, especially in bus stations. Bus stations outside of London are typically designed for single door loading and unloading, with the intention of keeping passengers out of certain areas, eg the reversing out apron. This means they’re usually the drive-in-reverse-out type, with longer layover times (eg Leeds)
I’m sure it’s pretty standard in loads of places. The Melbourne buses are one deck but two sets of doors.
I did like how in Manchester you got to say ‘thanks’ to the driver as you left but it was a pain in terms of numbers of people getting on an off. Personally I think the passenger amounts definitely warrant two sets of doors in at least the more popular Manchester routes.
One cool thing about Melbourne is the public transport system is actually a single entity for the whole state of Victoria so it’s a bit like being able to use your Oyster card to travel from your house in London to visit a mate’s house in Birmingham (Victoria is 0.57 the size of England according to a stat I found on online just now).
The problem is that adding an additional set of doors reduces the capacity of that individual bus, and so you have to get more buses, and run at a higher frequency to cover the difference. Outside of London, the system of bus management is so broken and underfunded that this is very hard to do.