Via Viator100 2018-08-31

 Via Viator100

From your Mole, to all who see this in hopes that you will enjoy your visit to this site.

Bienvenue !



Добро пожаловать! Хороший день!


When politicians involve themselves in technical matters, expect failures.

CEO's Question Time

Based upon the Parliamentary PM's Question Time at which questions may be asked of the Prime Minister.

Su Topo Proposes a new/replacement Flag for the LACMTA♪

Flag Source: royalty free, Creative Commons

In light of the LACMTA's unilateral actions to "make transfers easier", eliminating Day Passes, etc., One can see that they exhibit the same human kindness toward their captive ridership as those who originally flew the above flag did towards their captives.

Let's start with elimination of Day Passes: Day passes used to cost $7 for those with a TAP card; the passes remained in effect from the time of purchase until 3 A.M on the following day; the passes could be used for multiple trips.  the passes proved to be economical if one rode more than four buses during the period of validity.  This meant that a mother could make multiple shopping trips, pay bills, take children to the doctor etc., etc. all for a total Metro charge of $7!

No longer, beginning on July 15th, neither transfers nor Day Passes will be made available. This plan is regressive, punitive, illogical and is almost sure to bring about a drop in ridership.  I have asked people, to act on my behalf,  to find out the details of this plan regarding transfers and so far there have been no results.  They asked for a clear definition of what transfer on second boarding really means;  Additionally, request were made of Muni agencies and various TAP sites,  to detail the exact amount of money which would be deducted from uses TAP cards bases on their cohort: student; senior and regular passenger.  Again, no definitive replies have been received!  

Apparently a hearing was held Wednesday, January 17, 2018 at 1PM, please note, a hallmark of the LACMTA: "the convenient" day of the week (Wednesday) and time (13:00) of the meeting. A day and time which ensues that the most frequent users of day passes and transfers would be engaged in other activities, such as, earning a living.

What make this even more disgusting is the attempt by the LACMTA, by providing the sketchiest of details, to pass the blame on to the Muni agencies who actually take the money from users' TAP cards.

Please, let's diverge for a moment and review the LACMTA's revenue sharing with the Muni agencies.  Please review this report (extract)  LACMTA-REPORT

N.B. the $17,560,833 shared with some Muni agencies and documented in the report; let's determine how many $0.75 transfers the LACMTA could provide to its' passengers with that amount.  It turns out to be 23,414,444! Or in daily terms 64,149 each day for a year!  N.B. the LACMTA freely shares the tax dollars it collects from the taxpayers with other transit agencies but does NOTHING for its' ridership except make their transportation life more difficult and more costly. And that is nothing of which they can be proud.

If the penny-pinching LACMTA were to take some positive action on behalf of its' ridership, it would allow free access to all participating Muni agencies by holders of a Metro TAP card without requiring even 1 penny of payment payment.  That would increase ridership!

Everyone associated with the LACMTA should hang their collective heads in shame as a result of this blatant attempt at increasing fare collections and further pick the pockets of the working poor.

Do their bonuses increase by 25% whenever a given accounting period's fare collections increase by 5%?

Especially, now that la Taupe finds, from discussion with someone who assured me that this is true,  Day Passes may be purchased at Toonerville Trolley [light rail] stations!  Once again it is rail centric thinking.

When politicians involve themselves in technical matters, expect failures.

Imagining a white Board in the LACMTA's MEETING ROOM

CEO's Question Time

Based upon the Parliamentary PM's Question Time at which questions may be asked of the Prime Minister.

Questions for Mr. Phillip A. Washington, CEO Metro

Dear Mr. Washington:

I respectfully request answers to questions which puzzle me about the LACMTA operations. I would suggest that you present your answers to Los Angeles Times reporters who have my permission to edit, rephrase as long as the intent of the question is preserved and the publication rights to my questions without cost or obligation. With the understanding that the results of the Question and Answer interview be published in the Los Angeles Times. This allows the widest possible to your answers and I, as a Los Angeles Times subscriber, will also have easy access to your answers. 

Your Mole has listed his 2018 New Year's Wishes below and hopes that the LACMTA WILL MAKE THEM COME TRUE.  If that happens, it will make it the triumph of hope over experience!

UNANSWERED - THE QUESTIONS: The LACMTA spent lots of citizen's tax money to put up stop number signs around the system.  How many were installed?  How many were removed?  Texting is still a viable option to find out bus arrivals, yet few stop retain their numbers.  Why, exactly, were the stop number signs removed?
P.S. It shouldn't require two years to begin improving service, just have your staff read all the back issues of this blog and they will have a work list to start on, like, right away!  Oh, you are very welcome Mr. Washington!

The question for July: Why was such a poorly conceived and executed transfer system allowed to go forward given the following:
OCTA - is not a party to the LACMTA'S "Let's eliminate paper transfers" effort.  This cuts off a wide swath of transportation options, to the north (think Fullerton), south really the ENTIRE OCTA area. See map below.

OCTA Service Area

Then too, is the leap of faith required by this Mole when the LACMTA AND MONEY IS INVOLVED.  Simply put, the dysfunctional agency refuse to supply and financial reporting regarding its support of or investments in areas, which frankly they lack expertise and can't seem to avoid areas of which they should steer clear. Examples: They talked about becoming involved in an Uber like, "last mile" operation.  They supported, though perhaps weakly, Bird scooters as another "last mile" operation.  And yet another "last mile" operation, Metro's own money pit*, the bicycle rental operation.  Given the unsafe conditions involved in bicycling in Los Angeles, they not only promote it, they don't even provide the minimum level of safety equipment, viz., helmets!

*Based upon su Topo's own surveys of the few empty spots in the stall ranks.  And of course, the ear ringing silence from the LACMTA about what a grand idea renting bicycles was. Then too, riding a bicycle on a 32°C (90°F) day is not a lot of fun; for anyone involved.

ABC News reports that scooter-related injuries surge over summer In the article David Ho writes "... those sleek, fold-up foot scooters have sent nearly 9,500 Americans, mostly children, to emergency rooms with injuries this year."  Please follow the link above and read this important article.  

You will soon understand  why la Taupe is so against these conveyances.  They are, illogically, allowed to mix with pedestrians on walk ways and endanger, especially small children who may walk in an unpredictable manner.. Where others, including the mayor of Los Angeles, see the scooters at "first and last mile transportation solutions, you Mole views them as plaything operated by young people who many be unable to exercise proper precautions.

La Taupe does not hesitate say that he is much less than enchanted by the LACMTA'S new transfer payment system (store money on your tap card and when you make a second boarding transfer, the cost of the transfer will be deducted from the balance on your  TAP card). Your Mole is sure that the plan has some GAPS. 

Here is METRO's definition of the term: "Transfer on 2nd Boarding refers to the board-approved policy that eliminates the need for paper transfers when transferring between transit agencies. The goal of Transfer on 2nd boarding is to simplify transfers between transit agencies." Source: https://www.taptogo.net/articles/en_US/Website_content/Transfers-are-Now-Easier-With-TAP

Su Topo believes and hopes that this language clarifies the LACMTA's cuteness: [The cost of a transfer will be deducted from the balance stored on your tap card, if sufficient to cover the cost of the transfer AND you are making the first transfer to a participating Muni agency's bus system upon leaving a Metro bus- MOLE]   This language allows for the possibility of riding any number metro buses before transferring to a Muni bus.

Your Mole is also critical of the accounting safeguards, really  the lack of accounting safeguards which are a result of the LACMTA'S total disregard of its' ridership. Their attitude is something along the lines of "If we do it, they'll have to put up with it".  In this case money will be taken off the TAP CARD and the user will have no idea of how much was deducted or why it was taken.  Here is realistic example: You exit a Metro bus with $5.00 on your TAP card, you board a Big Blue bus, tap your card and the fare box gives you an OK beep tone or whatever that agency has decided upon to mean passed.  How much was taken, no se!  Would you buy an ice cream cone with your  Discover Card based upon such a lack of documentation.   It is this Mole's understanding that, in order to be able to check your balance you need to pay $5 for the privilege; which likely does NOT include a running audit trail of how it got to be that way. Perhaps the LACMTA has a smiling Mr. Mountebank who says "Trust me!"  However, we riders want PROOF!!

In any event, here is the LACMTA's take on their ["generous" - Mole's term]  balance protection plan: https://www.metro.net/riding/fares/protect-your-balance/

The entire transfer "system" has the look and feel of something "designed" by politicians.

What is necessary in this case, which involves the LACMTA and other transportation agencies, electronically transferring funds from your TAP card invisibly, is a receipting procedure. Which this Systems Engineer feels is well within the FARE BOX capabilities, possibly with some augmentation required; if not within LACMTA staff capabilities.

Transfer F A R E  R E C E I P T
DATE:  2018-10-31               
TAP Card NUMBER: 0230 0595 4561 0088
Amount deducted: .20
Balance: $1.80

Example: I have seen fare boxes, in use in Southern California, 
which printed transfers .  The transfer printing function could be altered to print receipts along these lines; the San Francisco Muni has been using fare boxes with transfer printing capability for over a year.  Here is a link to the San Francisco Muni's announcement.  Note the clean format and excellent communication; what a positive approach when compared to "others".

There it is, the basis for issuing receipts. Provided for you gratis, by la Taupe;  you are welcome, Mr. Washington!  Perhaps you can add receipt printing to the existing on-board GFI Odyssey fare boxes; giving you the possibility of reverting to transfers printed at the fare box should there be  when you see the implementation experience systems and/or legal glitches what this Moles sees as a poorly thought out mess. 

Expecting typical LACMTA  "thoroughness", this Mole  feels that there are yet lots of "t"s have been left uncrossed and "i"s undotted.  See also, the Mole's experience in attempting verify the LACMTA's statement that transfer prices would not increase; the statement remains unverified at this juncture. 

Bottom line: This has the look and feel of a fare increase; which it definitely is in the case of the discontinuance of Day Passes.  One must not forget Orange County; OCTA used to accept  Metro paper transfers but will not after 15 July.  That is another fare increase, especially in the Long Beach area because quite a few OCTA buses are seen in Long Beach.  LACMTA 5 - Passengers 0 

We need Your Input

Mr. Washington, please accept all of the above and the entire contents of this blog as responses to the on-board bus ads like the one shown above:

Say Hello To:

While the Mole is applying himself to LACMTA tasks, the above work of the graffitists (above) is spot on!  There seems to be infinitesimal effort expended by the LACMTA on supervising the bus route contractors, such as, M.V. Transportation and others.  Lines 125, 130, 232 and others are the ones which consistently offer unpleasant rides.  Mr. Washington, take some rides for yourself; soon you will see that to increase ridership you must make the LACMTA's service, seem, what shall I say, less third worldly.

AND to give my readers an idea of the really big money involved for giving what any usual person would consider to be poor service - please read the graffitists take in the "Say Hello To" photo just above. then take a look at this document.


The LACMTA DOES have a priority for its' passengers!

On the topic of every cycle I'm paying more for less service: Your Mole has recently experienced having his pass declined on a DOT shuttle in DTLA. La Taupe explained that he'd ridden A DOT shuttle not so long ago; which the DOT driver denied after a longish discussion that the ad seen on board a METRO bus was now "inoperative [su Topo's word] and they were back to collecting DOT's full fare again.  Of course, there were no notices on board buses which explained the change in policy —which is typical of the secretive LCMTA.

La Taupe searched for the "Metro Transfers Design Guide". He can't, in good conscience, provide you with a link because he felt that the guide is next to useless for the purpose of understanding how the new transfer policy will be implemented. That said, with more work, it would rise to the point of being useless.

The new transfer policy as understood by su Topo: if you load money —I believe that $1 is the minimum amount, when you transfer (transfer on second boarding in Metro's terms) the agency (Big Blue Bus, CCMBL, Torrance Transit, Foothill Transit, DASH? to which you transfer, WILL DEDUCT THE TRANSFER AMOUNT. What does that mean? 

For the LACMTA's take on their new transfer policy try this link, and good luck! N.B. They answer the question "will metro transfer prices increase?" NO.  But since they are not selling transfers anymore, of course they are not increasing the price of something they no longer sell! SO, the agency to which you transfer could well charge you their full fare and you would never know.  Only in the case where you don't have sufficient stored value; in which case la Taupe thinks that you will be denied a transfer fare and have to pay full fare.  

I am sorry, but this Mole is extremely suspicious of anything involving money and the LACMTA and assumes —since they have never done anything which benefits the ridership why should this be any different? No doubt, you will end up paying more money for less service.  And when the LACMTA IS questioned about the policy; their answer will probably be along the lines of "Oh, we didn't anticipate that! Now it is all programmed and with so many involved it is so difficult to change. someone just misunderstood."

Now, it would be nice if the LACMTA would write a clear, complete explanation of how the new transfer policy is expected to be implemented.  Emphasis should be placed on the TRANSFER COSTS WHICH ARE EXPECTED TO BE DEDUCTED FROM THE CASH STORED ON YOUR TAP CARD.  Here is a sample of how it might be communicated.

Agency         Transfer cost deducted from the TAP Card's "stored value" 

                                   Regular    Senior   Student

Beach  Cities                   ?

Big Blue Bus                    ?

Culver City                      .75

DOT Shuttle                     ?

Foothill Transit                  ?
Long Beach Transit           .50            .50†          .50


Su Topo will fill in the unknowns above, if and when they become defined.

Would that be so difficult?   NO!

Would that be a benefit to the LACMTA's ridership?  YES!

Will they do it?  Probably not!

Do they even understand the details of the new policy?  It depends, if the policy will put more money in somebody's pockets, they probably understand it otherwise,  Maybe not!

Associate contacted Taptogo and other sources on behalf of the lametromole and did NOT receive a definitive reply! Several replies were received but none would clearly define what transfer on second boarding really meant.  An example was given alone these lines, suppose one were to ride three (3) metro buses before transferring to a Muni bus, is this transfer on fourth boarding?

†This value is twice the old rate for selling paper transfers to seniors which  belies the LACMTA's statement that transfer prices would not increase!  As usual, the LACMTA does a shameful job of communicating. 

An unwelcome sign!

Notices like these are frequently seen around or near bus stops.  Businesses don't want LACMTA passengers in their facilities, neither does the LACMTA want to provide any creature comforts for their passengers either.

No Stop Number Sign here either

Here are su Topo's 2018 New Year wishes:

That the LACMTA would be more open rather than secretive. For example, reporting to us how much they spent to put up and take down the STOP NUMBER signs.  And exactly why the signs were removed. Then again, some of the signs seem to be reappearing?  Can they make up their minds? Yes, and then again, No.

That the LACMTA would be more considerate of the needs of their ridership.

That LACMTA would provide more and better security aboard trains and buses.

Conversely, my New YEAR WISH is that the RIDERSHIP would would have better manners.  The answer to "Please remove your feet from the seats",  should be, "yes, I'm Sorry". Not a string of curses and arguments  — and this from a "lady"? Is it any wonder that more usual people try public transportation and soon give up? It is a function of SECURITY and good order.  But since the LACMTA "management",except for the rare, politically motivated, photo op, how could they even know what their "service" is really like.

A Brief Rest, May 2018

Your Mole wishes that people, like the poor soul pictured above, 
could find much better living conditions than those which are found here.  

People are quick to describe this as the greatest country in the world.  Can that statement really be true when we cannot supply basic human needs a warm bed, a simple hot meal and essential hygiene facilities for the most needy among us? 

Close Enough for LACMTA Work

That LACMTA would train their drivers to position their buses at the bus stop "flag" and close enough to the curb to be a safe,  easy step away.  Either the drivers are not trainable or they just don't care.  which do you think it is?

Good Enough for LACMTA Work

That the LACMTA would supervise their bus stop cleaning contractors so that they actually clean the bus stop, not just do the absolute minimum. Shown above is an often seen condition, the dustbin inside the metal frame is emptied, well eventually.  In this case the plastic liner has been removed and positioned adjacent to, above in the photo, the metal frame is adjacent to, below in the photo.  But, within the metal frame, at the bottom waste continues to collect without ever being emptied. It accumulates in situ, over weeks or months, perhaps even years. Of course, the LACMTA makes no provision to follow up, supervise contractors or penalise poor work.

The LACMTA seems stymied as to how to deal with this situation.  So, su Topo will advise them: (1) Send a letter to the CEO of each organisation which has the responsibility of cleaning bus stops.  Say, "Payments will not be made  when stops show that cleaning has not been properly performed. The portion held back will represent the total owed divided by the number of stops in the contract the amount to clean a single stop— multiplied by the stops which have been inspected and found to be inadequately cleaned.;2) inspect the stops, note and photograph the deficiencies.  You should see a flurry of activity to remediate the problems.  You will also experience  a decrease in poorly cleaned stops.  There is a term for this activity, it is called MANAGEMENT!  There is also a term for the manner in which the LACMTA presently conducts business in this area.  It is called "paying good money for fourth-rate work".

That the LACMTA would supervise their contractors so that they set the volume of their on board stop announcements, dispatch radios [why can't they use the same  "telephone" system used by Metro?]at a comfortable listening level.

That the LACMTA would supervise their contractors so that the contractor's drivers would not "entertain"riders by turning off the ASA and then singing out  stops.  many, if not most riders want a safe, quiet trip so that they can listen to personal audio equipment,  sleep, read or just sit quietly.

That the LACMTA would collect fares from all passengers [see security above] rather than having income be drained away it is a crime, theft of services.

That the LACMTA would disallow boarding of passengers with unpleasant body odors, dragging trash bags stuffed with recyclables, drunk and/or threatening, unruly etc., etc. [see security above].

That the LACMTA would add the bus drivers number to the scrolling sign inside the bus, so that riders can report those drivers who are rude, crude and have poor driving skills.  Presently,both CCMBL and BBB scroll their drivers numbers.

That the LACMTA would insist that their drivers regular and contractorssecure wheelchair passengers. Rather, they ask the passenger if they wish to be secured; most seem to reply "NO".  In the  event of an accident, these heavy wheelchairs could bounce around the bus and injure other passengers.  But like many items, safety to passengers is extremely low on the LACMTA's priority list —if they even have such a list. 

LAWA Flyaway Bus with a METRO tribute!

The the LACMTA is spending the taxpayers money on Rent-a-Bike programs and other adventures which are only tangentially related to transportation, all the while their pockets are being picked by LAWA!

That the LACMTA fosters a culture of openness and transparency! Providing quarterly and annual reports for each significant project, reporting which reflects project status in terms of ahead of or behind plan and a budget metric showing dollars over/under budget would allow the public to evaluate their competency.

Riding LACMTA services is generally not that pleasant to begin with and is only made more unpleasant by experiencing the above "punishments". 

Can this be true?

As I walked the halls of the Taj Mahal this month, as the guest of an employee who was not aware that he was talking to the Mole, la Taupe looked through the open door of a room identified as the Office of Incredible Ineptitude and took the photo shown above.  It must be true because, as I rack my brain, I can add no accomplishment to their list.  However I can make the suggestions below.


As I looked more carefully, at the other end of the room I saw another white board, took a photo of it and placed that photo above.  You may not be aware that the LACMTA was criticized for spending taxpayers' money on entertaining themselves.  It is good to note that the criticism was effective and they now have fixed spending limits on their entertainment.  

2018-04-30          -   Additional Suggestions

Mr. Washington here are some things which you can easily improve.

Institute a 740 stop at Imperial BL to connect with the 120 line.

Presently, riders of the southbound 740 must walk a longish one block plus plus and then endure a very dangerous crossing of the two lane on ramp of the 105 freeway!

<holding for a  video of the crossing>

Allow for request stops so as to better intersect with desired transfer buses. When a bus must stop for a red light at a curb and a metro stop is just steps away from the curb, allow passengers to exit.  Example: The situation described just above exists at the intersection of Century BL and Hawthorne BL with the 40/740 northbound lines crossing South-North and the South bound 40/740 lines crossing North-South.  If the Eastbound 117 stops for a red light at the SOUTH-West corner of the intersection, riders, like me –frequently, could walk a few steps in safety to catch the bus.  Usually riders like me are FORCED by some edict that is supposed to be for “safety” to ride the 117 to the stop at the SOUTH-EAST corner of the intersection than cross BUSY, BUSY Hawthorne BL, after a long wait for a walk light, then doge heavy traffic to get back where they were (on the bus) minutes ago.  Often the view they get of the 40/740 is the of tail-lights of the departing bus; missed it!!

Moving the bus stop at 96th Street and Airport BL just a few feet South so that no vehicle could pass a stopped bus. This is so easy, even for the LACMTA, that it is a no brainer.  Eventually, someone who debused at the stop, in the midst of crossing 96th Street, will be struck and seriously injured or killed by a vehicle which zoomed around the stopped bus.

Re-route the 232 Line legacy path that is an artifact of one way streets which no longer exist.  It wastes fuel, imposes unnecessary wear and tear on buses and travels an unnecessarily elongated route. The present route, and this applies only to the Northbound 232: turns left (EAST) from Sepulveda at Mariposa; follows Mariposa to NASH where it turns right (SOUTH) and proceeds to the bus stop and drops Green line passengers and picks up Long Beach bound passengers backtracks to Grand AV where it turns right; proceeds to Sepulveda where it turns right over-running it's first traverse. This is an artifact of a long-ago changed pattern of one-way streets.

The Mole's suggested reroute (for years): from Sepulveda turn right at Grand AV; proceed EAST to Nash; turn left and drop Green Line MARIPOSA STATION  PASSENGERS on the EAST SIDE OF NASH; and pickups LAX bound passengers there as well; Make a left turn onto Mariposa; proceeds to Sepulveda where it make a right turn onto existing route.  The existing stop at Sepulveda, just north of Grand, can be served from a new stop at Grand, just east of Sepulveda.

A new stop on the North Side of Mariposa at Continental will be necessary.

The SOUTHBOUND 232 can continue on its' current route without change; EXCEPT that it would be ideal to loop through Plaza El Segundo by turning left off Sepulveda into South Hughes Way; then following the route of the WESTBOUND 125 through Plaza El Segundo; Exiting at Park PLace with a left turn onto Sepulveda.

The LACMTA hates to move bus stops even when it is necessary and they end up with a ridiculous route.

The 115 Westbound bus, near the end of the route, passes the northwest corner of Sepulveda Bl and La Tijera BL located at Sepulveda Bl and La Tijera Bl; which shopping center has a large supermarket, a pharmacy, a bank, and quite a few restaurants.  Instituting a request stop there would require no expense and only a brief stop to discharge passengers.  It would be nice to see the LACMTA do something for its' ridership!  How about it, Mr. Washington?

Then there is the 117 Line stop at Century BL and  Aviation Bl near LAX.  The stop was relocated to the northEAST corner of Century and Aviation while he Crenshaw Line flyover of Century Bl was being constructed.  Now, years later the construction has been completed but the stop remains.  Both CCMBL and BBB  stop on the northeast corner of the Century Bl and Aviation Bl —in fact those organisation never changed their bus stops.  This means that 117 Line passengers must debus at the stop on the northeast corner of Aviation BL, as noted above, cross a very busy intersection and walk almost a full block in total to make that connection.  LACMTA!, revert to the former bus stop and save your passengers some hassle and provide a smooth transfer experience.

Mr. Washington: Please take action to place Porta-Potties at the LAXCBC. So as to suppress the PUBLIC URINATION which goes on there daily.

Trash cans? We don't need no trash cans!

The photograph below documents the situation at the Maxella AV and Lincoln BL stop on the BBB number 3 Line. It is the sort of “work” one would expect from the LACMTA. They taped or caused to be taped shut the aperture in the plastic pipes associated with power poles. These pipes continue to be used as improvised trash cans. BBB N.B. The stop still needs a trash can!

BBB Maxella Trash Fix???

Su Topo will include this comment in every post with the above until BBB corrects the problem. For quite awhile BBB has been charging for inter-line transfers, reversing the long-standing policy of free transfers to other BBB lines. This presents the BB as less friendly to its ridership than in years past.

Too, BBB has spent lots of money to build a big headquarters on Colorado BL just east of 4th Street. Mr. King, just a few dollars for a trash can, you might need a few more to cover other bus stops too, will erase this section. After all, it is Marina Del Rey! :-)

Why a trash container is needed♪

The photo above shows exactly what people will do when a trash container is not provided. They will jury rig something. What they did, in this case, is rip off the tape which covered the plastic pipes at the base of the utility pole and stuffed their trash into the pipe, nice, huh?

Edward F. King, Director of Transit Services
City of Santa Monica's Big Blue Bus

The man pictured above could ensure that trash containers are installed along BBB routes with a simple three-line memorandum.

White Line Incursion Series
Su Topo uses video to highlight the problem of scofflaw drivers endangering Metro bus passengers yet, no authority seems to want to take ownership of the problem. The issue is not unique to the particular site documented by your Mole, but is illustrative of a general problem. Your Mole encourages you to report similar problems to the appropriate agencies in your area(s) and hope that you will have better luck than he. In the youtube.com videos linked below one can see exactly what happens when the policing agencies fail to enforce traffic laws. 

Further, when the agency responsible for public transportation is so lacking in every skill necessary for success yet will apply their only tool to the job.  when your only tool is a PR flack; then every issue seem soluble by issuing a boastful press release.

The video(s) linked below document the important fact that a never- ending stream of vehicles fail to use the lane as required by law.

Neither are the policing agencies active when it comes to protecting us by bringing these obvious and frequent traffic law violations to an immediate halt. The LACMTA is derelict as well, in that they fail to use the near hourly proof of the violations captured by the on board cameras, mentioned here, and discussed at length in the posting of 2012-05-31.

In this video you will see Enterprise Rant-A-Car Shuttles  cutoff a 111 Line bus. It represents the typical dangerous incursion of other traffic across a solid white line into the bus' lane

These incursions happen multiple times per day so it is only a matter of time before an accident occurs.

Airport auto rental shuttle drivers, FlyAway drivers and others, if shown in the above videos, are all Class-B operators and should know better; but often they don't care and neither does the LACMTA nor any of the policing agencies which have jurisdiction in the area.

Please carefully note that in some videos, pedestrians are pinned to the curb by the vehicles that cut in front of the bus —as a result these pedestrians are illegally denied the right-of-way. Which right-of-way would be unchallengeablely theirs IF, and only IF, Mr. Washington would review su Topo’s simple solution (vide infra) and implement it.

In spite of the potential for these violations to occur several times per HOUR, I have never seen a police presence at this location. One would think that with a bus schedule taped to the dashboard one of the several policing agencies would have made some arrests by now. Unless they have "more important" work to do than protecting bus passengers.

Thanks to www.youtube.com or their excellent video support!
La Taupe feels that it is appropriate to dedicate these video(s) to ALL the agencies that should be protecting us. So, they are dedicated to (1): Airport (LAWA) Police, (2) the L.A.P.D., (3) the L. A. County Sheriff’s Department and (4) Mr. Washington who is the current CEO of the LACMTA.

Mr. Washington, Su Topo has recommended a simple solution to the problem. That is, have the 111 Line buses pull up to pedestrian crosswalk, stop there stop and discharge passengers. Doing so eliminates the space in front of the bus which the always-in-a-hurry scofflaws use to cut in front of the bus. But, with the LACMTA nothing is simple. Although the solution could be implemented with nothing more than a memo to the 111 Line drivers, it is a task for which the LACMTA so far has proved to be inadequate.

Office of Exceptional Ineptitude
Rumour Central
The plans are not yet final but there are leaks to the effect that the OOEI has considered out maneuvering Elon Musk, after the good press which obtained after he detailed his high-speed subway transportation system.

In light of the plans plans of private developers to build an aerial tramway to Dodger Stadium; they insist upon calling it a "gondola", which in fact, is only the passenger compartment. The OOEI MAY be developing plans for transporting baseball fans to Dodger Stadium using a less expensive, more efficient aerial method.

Exactly what might these plans entail? 

Well, does the thought of a  puff of smoke emanating from a cannon barrel give you a hint?  

Does Elon Musk's "Dugout Loop" put an end to the exciting prospect  of flying through the air and ending up being caught in a net?

Pasadena, CA -Metro Bike Rack-1

The LACMTA thought that they'd spent fist-fulls of taxpayer dollars and earn barrels of profit on this bike rental scheme. 

Pasadena, CA -Metro Bike Rack-2

There are not so many empty slots in these racks because there are other options for bike rentals.  Perhaps the LACMTA should stick to what they know best, er stick to their version of mass transit!  Even the crowded, unfriendly buses are better on rainy days.

Pasadena, CA -Metro Bike "Infrastructure"

This truck, and perhaps more like it, has a driver who drives around and reclaims bikes that end up, wherever. 

This costs money too.  Your Mole feels that barrels of profit are not likely to materialise. 

There is a downside too, as far as it appears, helmets are not rented with the bikes and when the lawsuits begin an outflow of funds could also follow. By not renting helmets there is an implied "safety" that doesn't exist on the streets of Los Angeles. The Metro advertisements show a woman riding down a wide, seemingly uninhabited country lane.  See: Mole's post.

The above photos are representative of the management's "sitting in the Taj Mahal and dreaming of ways to spend money".  

What is needed is a hard-nosed Controller and an Inspector General who is dedicated to rooting out the extant waste, abuse and probably some fraud as well.

The controller should publish details of the agency's Budget position as well as a Profit and Loss Statement —methinks lots of loss!

The voters have given the LACMTA free rein to tap into the tax revenue stream for DECADES.  If anyone feels that that is the manner in which to encourage responsible spending, they should lie down until the feeling goes away.

A Filthy Bus Stop, number 07547.

When one encounters a situation like this, try to rectify it by calling the number below which usually appears on the bus bench.  When the stop is cleaned, the detritus inside the metal framework and under the blue litter can is almost never removed. The word "third rate" comes to mind.  Also the words unsupervised and/or poorly managed play a large role in the way the LACMTA interfaces, if they do actually interface, with their contractors.  This is a simple thin to correct; just supervise the vendors tasked to do the cleanup!

An even Filthier Bus Stop, number 08670.

This  scene makes a statement about management; really about how management is breaching their fiduciary responsibility. Taxpayer funds are spent on cleaning bus stops; in actuality,  taxpayer funds are paid to vendors who are contracted to clean the bus stops, whether the vendors do a good or extremely poor job, as in the situation pictured above.

 Call for Maintenance.

Bus stop benches often have a contact number affixed to them. I can't say always because as you have seen, the LACMTA seems to lack effective processes —they could never conform to ISO 9000 requirements—.

As for calling maintenance, la Taupe called once, and surprise, no action was taken.

Bottle Scavengers took the plastic liner!♪ Stop number ITC

As one can see, the plastic liner is missing; taken to hold recycled bottles, most likely.

A contractor cleans up ITC

Pictured above, we can see an LACMTA contractor, WMS, putting IMC in order.  As I waited for 740 bus, the four man crew was hard at work.

Extremely Dirty Parada!

It appears that the recyclers have attacked this rubbish bin, too. Emptying its contents and then taking the plastic liner and any thing that could be recycled.

A theory of personal development to which I subscribe, suggests that one should never point out a problem without proposing a solution.  

The Problem - trash bins only partly emptied like the one shown above.

The Solution in 2 easy steps - Instructions for the cleaners apparently not provide by the LACMTA (the ARROWS show usually ignored bits that are allowed to accumulate, ... forever.) ♪

It would also be best practice to stencil the bus stop number as your Mole did in his photo. 

A Stairway at a rail Station.

 As almost everything associated with the LACMTA it is abominably maintained.  In this case some riders cannot hold on their rubbish until they can properly dispose of it.  Their thoughtlessness endangers their fellow riders, who could slip on the thoughtlessly disposed of plastic or other slippery materials and fall; all compounded by the fact that the LACMTA seems to be in no hurry to cleanup the mess.

The conditions pictured above a clear indication that the LACMTA is incapable of managing its' contractors.  Su Topo never hesitates to offer his considered opinion.

There is no question that the LACMTA lack an organisational structure to manage those who supply contract services to the agency.  So, here is a solution: Stop all bonus payments to management and any others who are presently paid bonuses.  The bonus, for people who adequately preform their job functions should be that they keep their jobs.  Generally, LACMTA management are overpaid and supplied with too many perks.  The perks, too, should be greatly reduced.  Chauffeurs and company supplied cars should be eliminated.  There are lots of buses and riding them may help management understand what is wrong with their system, e.g., too many free rider and some, perhaps only a few, rude operators.  

Management should focus on the Metro ridership, making things move faster, smoother and more comfortable along with providing the much needed restrooms along the way.

Unfortunately, the management. IMHO, thinks that their job is to sit in the Taj Mahal and dream up ways to spend money.

Competition is Encouraged

Beverly Hills Bicycles

The photos above show some of the competition which has been encouraged by the LACMTA, whose pricing umbrella provides a profit opportunity for companies like, Bird, Beverly Hills Bicycles, etc. 

Lime Bike

 This cluster of lime Bikes was seen in DTLA.

Metro Bikes-1

As was this cluster of Metro Bikes. There seem not to be many rented.

Metro Bikes-2
 Here are more Metro Bikes seen in Downtown Los Angeles.

Not so many rented here either!  The LACMTA'S idea of getting rich by renting bicycles while solving the "Last Mile" problem may have come to the usual end of such LACMTA plans! I'd really like to see the original proposal, budget and the P & L statement on this project!

Apropos to the topic of Bicycles, is an article which appeared in La Opinión

Here is an overview:

Peligro en dos ruedas: aumentan los choques fatales entre bicicletas y autos en Los Ángeles

Danger on two wheels: fatal crashes between bikes and cars in Los Angeles increase

"Ser cauteloso mientras anda en bicicleta puede salvarle la vida".

Being cautious while riding a bicycle can save your life.

Reporter: Jacqueline Garcia 22 mayo 2018

“Philip Rodríguez, residente de Wilmington, dijo que él utiliza su bicicleta como medio de transporte pero también tiene un carro y sabe lo peligroso y cuidadoso que debe ser en ambos casos.

Para mí lo que más he visto cuando ando en bicicleta es cuando los carros van a salir [de estacionamientos] y solo voltean para un lado, no voltean para el otro donde pudiera venir un ciclista”, detalló. “También muchos se la pasan texteando en el teléfono”.

"Philip Rodriguez, a resident of Wilmington, said he uses his bicycle as a means of transportation but also has a car and knows how dangerous and careful it must be in both cases.

For me what I have seen the most when I ride a bicycle is when the cars are going to leave [a parking spot] and the driver only looks to one side, [they] do not turn [and look] to the other [side] where a cyclist could come," he explained. "Many also spend their time texting on the phone.”

Bicycle safety is of critical importance in Los Angeles.  

Muchas gracias a La Opinión y a la Sra. Gracia por su trabajo.

Further evidence of the LACMTA's approach to maintenance.

We know that this is the Metro, but really, what are you trying to tell us?

An Accident Waiting to Happen!

Confused drivers, pedestrians, tired Train Operators, or any combination or permutation of these, which at grade level, can cause fatalities. Note the downward slope of the tracks which can result in an additional operator workload in controlling trains. 

What bus am I riding?

The "shakeup" (bi-annual schedule changes) has been in effect for about three  weeks and finding on-board schedules which match the route of the bus in which you are riding, is next to impossible.  HINT: It is NOT the 128 
Line!  In April, four months after the "shakeup" either no schedules are available on buses OR the wrong schedules are in the racks; example: a 40 Line bus has 110 Line schedules.

Oops, trip on this OOII artifact and you'll be under the bus!

Extremely sloppy work!  A bus stop flag pole was removed here leaving the pole's foundation very near the curb, for children, the aged or anyone at all to trip over and fall into the street.  If one was hurrying, one might well end up under the wheels of the bus.  All that needed to be done here was to remove the four nuts holding the base in place, remove the base and then with a metal cutting blade saw the protruding bolts level with the concrete.  A  professional could perform the job in minutes.  But the LACMTA's failure to supervise its' workers or contractors results in the situation depicted above.  Worse yet, is the LACMTA's failure to see what has to be done.

How will the LACMTA solve this problem? Well, the LACMTA will hold a series of meeting over months and then likely forget about the problem. 

Your Mole proposes this solution: Whenever a training bus is covering a route, on the first and last trip of route training, the operator being trained and the trainer would both alight at each stop and check it for safety.  Both parties would fill out a bus stop safety report.  That way new operators would be indoctrinated into a culture of safety and know how to report bus stop safety issues; the experienced trainer would add to his/her knowledge and be able to discuss issues he/she had seen with their trainee.

Brilliant idea Mole!  Hardly that, but it is logical thinking.  

The Sign Most Dreaded by LACMTA Riders!

One can't find a loo when they are most needed!  Does anyone really believe that the LACMTA management really cares?  After all, they just tell their chauffeur to pull into the nearest coffee shop so that they can have a "break".  

They are going to spend $8,000,000 on a few new restrooms and the rehab of a few more at Union Station!  When will those restrooms be ready?  La Taupe's estimate: it will be a couple of years and the restrooms in Union Station will likely be out of service for a long while too.  


This seems to be a proper place to make an award to the LACMTA for their weak, ineffective attempts, if any, to provide for the comfort, convenience, safety of their ridership while providing them with value for their money. See the award below, enlarged for easier viewing.

1/4096th Star (The Mote)

This is the easiest award to win. It requires almost no effort.

The fractional five star award

This is awarded for the LACMTA'S unparalleled efforts in  vitiating Los Angeles transportation.

How BBB Gets It Done!

This worker, using a high pressure delivery system leaves a clean, really clean bus stop.  Not like the messes found at LACMTA Transportation Centers, such as ITC!  And at the many filthy bus stop around the city.  Well ITC was cleaned up, kind of, but the outlines of the gum blobs were retained.  How about a do0over with a higher pressure hose?

BBB has Nextbus!

This is not related to the Office of Incredible Ineptitude, but rather another BBB work product which serves to show how a more honest transportation provider names their supplier's product, i.e., correctly, viz., "nextbus" and they kept the stop numbers and texting in place as a benefit for its ridership.

While the LACMTA, sneakily, er, covertly did away with the many, if not most, of the stop numbers without offering a word of explanation.

Nextbus on my iPhone, it's GREAT!

I simply opened the nextbus.com site using my browser, it took over asked permission to use my location, which permission I granted and voilà; I was presented with all the bus availability at stops within reasonable walking distance of my position.  Shown above is on the first screen of several.  importantly, there is no need for an "app", because since Tim Cook stopped updating my iPhone at iOS6 which then froze all my apps, which, although had updates available, they were denied to me.  When this iPhone fails, I'm going with Samsung!

The nextbus.com site, a valuable tool!

But, where there is the will, there is a way.  Su Topo visited the nextbus page at Next Bus: Using the drop down menu; set the bus route number to 130 (Or your desired choice of the route; selected the stop that I have used and will be using at some other time in the future, to Hawthorne Blvd and Artesia and voila, the stop number "00147" was filled in for me.

Now I can note that stop number and its location in my agenda and soon I will have reconstructed the subset of stop numbers which I require.

It would had been much easier if the LACMTA, stupidity, er, I mean, with lack of intelligence, had not rushed to waste money and removed the stop number signs which had cost quite a bit to install in the first place.  

Please contemplate Mole's Law Number 1: "When politicians involve themselves in technical matters, expect failures." 

 They Should Have just placed the stop number as shown above

That way the numbering system would have had relevance far into the future.   it could been adapted to emergency services, 911 reporting when an incident occurs away from numbered houses or people have trouble pronouncing local street or intersection names.

Stenciling the numbers on the bus flag is economical and efficient - if you know what your Mole means.  But no,the LACMTA seems to act before it thinks.

Torrance Transit Uses NextBUS Too!

That is how we can tell that the LACMTA have made an error; because everyone else is using Nextbus texting and the LACMTA have removed most of their bus stop numbering signs.

LDOT has nice Stop Numbers!

This is the way the LACMTA should have done it.  Fast, simple and understandable.

Metro's Flag a revés

At sea, a vessel in distress will fly its' flag upside down. It is only right that, given the dysfunctional LACMTA, we should fly Metro's flag in that manner.
In this section it is su Topo's intention to call your attention to situations which he has observed that highlight the "LACMTA Way" of doing things.

An homage for her "contribution" to L.A. transportation.

Your Mole would like the former head of LAWA remembered for her "contribution" to Los Angeles area public transportation. She was quicker than her contemporary, the former bus driver and former head of the LACMATA, to implement the lucrative FlyAway service and discouraged all attempts, however feeble, to bring other modes of transportation to LAX.

Too, we should memorialize her attitude vis-à-vis public transportation directly to LAX in following the transportation direct-to-airport access pattern used by many, if not most, world-class airports, to wit, "you go under the airport, it is fraught with problems, ...” [hardly a get it done attitude!].

The Mole reads the papers and other things, obviating the necessity of your doing so.

Where available, links to the cited reporting is provided in “Works Cited”, Vide infra.

The Times covers (Nelson) the LACMTA's first-in-the-nation Security cameras.  Ms Nelson writes: "Los Angeles County’s rail system will be the first in the United States to deploy body scanners that can detect suicide vests and other improvised explosives, transportation officials said Tuesday."

"Later this year, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority will deploy several portable scanners that can be moved to any of the system’s 93 subway and light-rail stations. The devices will be used in response to terrorism threats, or to scan large crowds at a station near a protest or a sporting event, officials said."

"Metro’s new scanners cost about $100,000 each and can process more than 2,000 people an hour, Metro spokesman Dave Sotero said — an improvement over previous generations of scanners but a fraction of the crowds at the system’s busiest stations." 

The article  includes photographs, credited to the reporter, which provide additional depth and a better understanding of the display screen as viewed by the scanner operators.

This is a must-read piece which allows one to strip away the usual LACMTA hype  which accompanies most of their announcements.   So, please read the entire article.

Ms Nelson's eminently readable prose allows la Taupe to understand that from the standpoint of being fit-for-purpose, this equipment needs a speedup which will  allow for traffic scanning at busy-stations. 

Further, a policy that will remove the timidity of approach that demands everyone opt-in and submit to being scanned.  For example, the number of CCTV cameras in London is approaching  500,000!   But Mole, CCTV cameras are not scanners!  True enough but adding a scanning feature  which marked individuals with follow-up metadata, in theory would not be a gigantic technical leap and no one would be the wiser, except eventually, the bad guy.

Please consider this scenario: a person approaches a screening frame at an airport, sees it and turns and runs away.  Would the attitude of the TSA (Transportation Security Agency) personnel simply say "OK, run along now." Or would they apprehend that individual.  Which is the right option?  

In the area of fit-for purpose, these scanner must  be concealed so that the scans can be evaluated and the required actions taken. Individuals suspected of malicious intend can be followed to the best possible location for a 'take-down".  The mildest form of which involves establishing that a weapon being carried by the individual is properly permitted.

Ms Nelson documented a clear profile of timidity on the part of the LACMTA, who seemed more concerned about 4th Amendment, unreasonable search and seizure as well as failure to discuss proper protocols.  they did say that "... Metro will keep other officers nearby to handle bomb-sniffing dogs and to perform further searches".  

I believe I know what would a suicide bomber who saw a dog running toward him, would do.   

This Mole sees clearly that protecting the general public from mass casualty attacks by using an unobtrusive body scans in 2018 given the history of the past 20 years,  should be legal under the 4th endearment!  Certainly, the better course of action in not to allow the potential criminal to detonate his suicide vest and then go into police mode and do, exactly, what?  

Your Mole ventures to say that anyone found guilty of unreasonable search for and seizure of say, a suicide vest, should be sentenced to dining on  and enjoying a ten-course dinner, then being celebrated as a hero!

LA. Biz. announces (Ellingson) another option to transport baseball fans to Chevez Ravine a become available.  It has been  proposed by Elon Musk’s Boring Company,

Ms Ellingson writes: “With baseball season in full swing, Elon Musk has turned his attention to alleviating traffic around Dodger Stadium.
The Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) chief's The Boring Co. announced a proposal on Wednesday to build a 3.6-mile Dugout Loop from the Metro Red Line to Chavez 

The zero-emissions, high-speed underground public transportation system would have two stops — a “western terminus” near the Metro’s Vermont/Sunset Station, Vermont/Santa Monica Station or Vermont/Beverly Station, and an “eastern terminus” near the stadium.”

City News Service reports (Clough) that the Los Angeles City Council Transportation Committee has reviewed its’ earlier version of proposed regulations for dockless electric scooters and amended them.   Mr. Clough writes: “…recommending that their top speed be capped at 12 mph while also creating a conditional-use permit system for them and other emerging mobility devices.”  “Councilman Paul Koretz, pulling his support for them last week and calling for a temporary ban on them in the city until full regulations are in place.”
Your Mole sides with Councilman Koretz on this issue and sees that these things don’t belong in the usual mix of bicycles, other vehicles and pedestrians —to whom they present a special hazard.

NBC (Channel 4) reports (Staff) that the hodgepodge of ill suited transportation options continues.

NBC writes: "A four-mile streetcar through downtown Los Angeles moved closer to reality after a $590 million funding plan outlined how a combination of federal grants, county Metro funds and local dollars could lead to groundbreaking on the project in the near future".

In this case, although the connective functions of the DASH buses and the Downtown Connector , which your MOLE calls an unnecessary "Band Aid" —due to poor initial planning of the subway lines, will now be augmented by someones' pet project, a streetcar.

Here  is a thought for that someone, dump this useless idea and put your weight and the over half million dollar which a streetcar would cost behind supplying something which the citizens of Los Angeles want. need and would use, viz., restrooms in every bus center and rail station throughout the county.  I know that that someone is either chauffeured around town or has a city supplied vehicle; but that is not the case for those who must use the transportation supplier of last resort —the LACMTA.

Or split up the funding and fix the Toonerville Trolleys by raising the at grade segments to be aerial and converting the mass transit to RAPID TRANSIT.  

By eliminating a useless track loop while patching up a poorly designed rail system system; They might also consider bringing a stop to the punishment of the Toonerville Trolley users and installing much needed escalators in their stations and while they are at it, provide restrooms everywhere needed.

The Beach reporter documents (Rosenfeld) more facts about electric scooters.
Mr. Rosenfeld writes: "Are [electric scooters] a public nuisance littering streets and sidewalks or a progressive way of getting from place to place?
Opinions have been mixed. Across the country, the scooters have been inciting some unhappy people who don’t like them much lying around. Some have acted out their disdain on social media with photos of the scooters in piles, garbage cans or other obscure places like stapled in two parts to a telephone pole, documented on Instagram pages such as Bird Graveyard.
In San Pedro, pranksters wedged a lime bike underneath the standing fisherman figure that is part of a memorial statue on Harbor Boulevard."

"Around town, the scooters have been getting a mixed response. In a city survey of more than 600 residents, 47 percent were in favor of the scooters while 39 percent were opposed. An overwhelming number said they believed there should be certain restrictions according to [Police Chief Bill] Whalen.

Your Mole has attempted to share  the  pavement of Santa Monica and Los Angeles with those whose brains are not yet fully  mature.  Accounts in the press of citations being issued for: not wearing helmets, riding on sidewalks, etc. seem frequent. This Mole hopes an prays that no one is seriously injured by the rider of an electric conveyance

The Times covers (Nelson²) some of the many problems associated with the electric scooters that litter the Los Angeles landscape.  

Ms Nelson reports: "Westside residents have complained that scooting on sidewalks poses a safety risk to pedestrians, and that parked scooters that block doorways and wheelchair ramps violate the Americans with Disabilities Act."

"Earlier this month, City Council members proposed requiring a device in each scooter that would limit its operating speed to 12 mph — an acknowledgement that, even though riding scooters on the sidewalk is illegal in California, it’s where many riders end up."

“It’s been something that people have loved,” Mayor Eric Garcetti told reporters last week. “But we’re also seeing a lot more emergency room visits, and it’s unsafe.”  [Politicians love to "straddle issues", don't they? Mole]

This Mole doesn't straddle: He believes that given the speeds of which the scooters are capable, they belong on the street and the operators/riders should wear helmets as the law dictates.

Do read the entire article but don't expect coordinated, logical results from the City of Los Angeles politicians.

Given the downtown bus. subway service along  train service and the seemingly little used METRO bicycles, these vehicles, freighted with drawbacks, may be "fun" for some but, don't seem like a good first/last mile solution.

The Los Angeles Times expert on the CHSRA, among other things, informs us (Vartabedian) the latest happenings in the on-going Bullet Train story.

Here is Mr. Vartabedian's lead paragraph: “The California bullet train project has cost state taxpayers an average $3.1 million a day over the last year — a construction spending rate higher than that for the Bay Bridge, Boston’s Big Dig or any U.S. transportation project in recent history

But still it’s not enough, planners say.”

The response from CHSRA, [this is your Mole's interpretation, we can't spend money fast enough.] But, please follow the link in Works Cited (below) and arrive at your own conclusions.

What a contrast between CHSRA and the LACMTA; the former can't spend fast enough and the latter can't stop being so tightfisted that they turn rapid transit into mass transit by interspersing grade level sections between elevated sections and depriving its' ridership of creature comforts such as rest rooms and escalators.  They will leave the Los Angeles transportation landscape scared by their poor planning, worse execution and extreme penuriousness. La Taupe cannot help but wonder if this approach to a transportation legacy yields higher bonuses?

The Los Angeles Times relates (Nelson³) the sad story of a man who lost his legs in a preventable accident involving the Gold Line.  Here is what Ms Nelson wrote: “A Los Angeles County man who spent nearly 11 minutes unconscious on a stretch of track in Boyle Heights before being struck by a Gold Line train has sued the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, alleging that his life-altering injuries were preventable.”

This story is made even sadder when one recognises that the LACMTA almost never does anything (that translates to spending money) to improve a situation for their ridership; be it in terms of safety, comfort or convenience.  Years ago, I noted that the third rails were dirty and need to be painted in a conspicuous manner to make its' danger easily apparent. I doubt that they ever corrected the situation there.

The LACMTA's Own Crumbling Infrastructure

Elevator at the Harbour Freeway Busway Station

Note the  filthy condition of this elevator.  The LACMTA never seems to fix or clean anything.

The Los Angeles Toonerville Trolley experience

«La douleur est toujours moins forte que la plainte.» 

Jean de la Fontaine (1621-07-08~1695-04-13)

[The pain is always less strong than the complaint..]

Merci beaucoup à http://evene.lefigaro.fr/ pour la citation et à google.fr pour le matériel biographique.

Ars longa vita breva 

Noël Bellemare (?~1546)  

An example  one of is illuminated manuscripts  can be seen here.

The work is a property of Muse Louvre, Paris, France. The photograph  is by: TangoPaso  File Details & Rights

Merci bien à  www.google.fr pour le matériel biographique.


Louis Couperin  (1626-~1661-08-29)

écoutons Louis Couperin's  Piecès de Clavecin avec Richard Egarr,

Merci Beaucoup à Aegon Couperin2 pour le téléchargement !

As an encore, shall we listen to  Alexandre Aliabiev's (1787-08-15~1851-03-06)  Variations on the Ukrainian Theme The Cossack on the Danube

Thank you! to   KuhlauDilfeng2 for the Up1oad.

Merci beacoup à  www.google.fr pour le matériel biographique.

Thank you youtube.com for allowing us to hear these beautiful, historical performances.

Here is something from a musical genre which I hope you'll like.

N.B. Here is the URL for KXLU's embedded player

A Snippet from THE KXLU Web Site

Serenata de Trios - KXLU . Musique en Eapañol Sunday evenings Pacific Time.

One can also listen on kxlu.com at Pacific Time or at the UTC day/time noted, record the broadcast if you can.  Su topo uses VLC) to Record Internet broadcasts for a more convenient listening time.  Here is is an example of the musical genre heard on Seranata de Trios. Aqui es Trio Hermanos Michel - te traigo serenata 

  Muchas Gracias a "FUT MESS" for the upload, and thank you to youtube.com for allowing us to present this music!

¡Muchas gracias a Serenata de Trios y KXLU for their terrific music and inspiration!

Serenata de Trios on KXLU(88.9 FM Los Angelesfeatures authentic acoustic musica, which your Mole really likes! :-)

As an encore, a favourite of su Topo, an especially beautiful version of Solomente Una Vez by  La Sonora Santanera, featuring Guadalupe Pineda

Again, Thank you youtube.com for allowing us to listen to this beautiful, though uncredited, music!

Metro Area – Lower your expectations!♪

Inured? You'd better be inured if your only transportation is Metro!  Look at the  rear of this bus and see that the prescient graffiti artists have warned you about the future of Los Angeles transportation.

The Mole rides again so that you don't have to climb 50° stairways to Toonerville Trolley platforms and wonder what, if any, LACMTA buses will be waiting for you at your arrival station.
(dates are ISO8601 format, times are expressed in the 24 hour system.)


Improvised Loo at the LAXCBC.

If the LACMTA doesn't provide the facility the ridership will work it out!

2018-07-24: Before 09:00, La Taupe takes a ride on the Expo Line.

The first barrier to  pleasant ride n this very hot day is the lack of an escalator.  Your Moe chants to himself; One step "Cheap", next step "Bad Word" and repeat.

Chanting Stairway

The view after reaching the top, at the bottom is the slowest elevator in the world.

The rail cars used the Expo line are crowded and coffin-like; I can easily touch the ceiling. All along the trip they were announcing bus lines available at each station: Big Blue Bus #8, Culver City #3, etc.  

Further, the aisles are incredibly narrow; they measured 63.5 cm (25 inches) side of seat to side of seat.  It would be rare for two adult Americans  to be able to pass side by side!  Just another money-saving artifice employed by the LACMTA.

When we reached Sepulveda Station, the only station which had Metro buses available, not a word was said.  In things great and small the LACMTA is simply NO GOOD!  

Flags exposing the secret Buses available at Expo-Sepulveda Station

These buses, unannounced on the train, are waiting over a block away from the station and are partially concealed.  The wait for the layover to end lasted almost 15 minutes without any benches upon which to rest, after standing for the whole trip!  

The location of these buses is illogical!  The stop should be much nearer the station so as to avoid the long walk on hot or rainy days; covered benches should be provided.  This review of the Expo Line, undoubtedly  applies in various degrees to other Lines stations.

Longish Walk to the Buses

This photo, taken from the corner of Sepulveda & Exposition BLVDs allows one to estimate the distance to the bus layover point, where one boards, is just beyond where the footway curves to the left.  On the walk one must maintain an alert attitude in order to compete with bicyclists, Bird (Electric Scooter) users while walking. Click the photo for an enlarged view.

The View Back towards the station from the Expo Line Bus stop

Here, looking back towards the Expo Line Sepulveda Station, which station is not even visible, it seems a long way away.

A Comfortable bench provided by the LACMTA upon which to rest for the 20 minutes or so one must wait for a bus.

It's true! The bench is really an overturned shopping cart because the LACMTA never gives a though to making things comfortable to its; ridership.

Mr. Washington , please take your board of directors on a round trip ride from 7th/Metro to Santa Monica and back using the Expo Line. If they are not claustrophobic when they board, they will be by the trip's end.  Ask then how they feel about the lack of public toilets and escalators.  

To ensure that they enjoy the full experience go down to street level at Sepulveda Station spend walk West to a 734 bus stop, board and ride to Sepulveda and Santa Monica Blvds, walk West from that bus stop for about a block and have a coffee at the Starbucks located at the corner.  

Then ride a 234 or 734 bus back to Sepulveda Station,  eschew the elevator and briskly climb the stairway.  continue on to Santa Monica and board the next train back to 7th/Metro.  After boarding, ask everyone: "Are we having fun yet?".

2018-08-21 The first time to use the elimination of paper transfers system; Your Mole adds  $1 to his TAP Card.  As he boards a CCMBL bus and  taps his card, he asks the driver how much they take from his TAP Card for the transfer.  "I don know" is  the driver's answer.  So far su Topo is batting close to zero.  Totally stonewalled by most concerned.  

Here, in clear language, is your Mole's take on the LACMTA's plan for its' elimination of paper transfers. It is out of the transfer business!  The passengers provide the money on their TAP Card and there is virtually no involvement for the LACMTA.  Although they will transfer money to your TAP Card, if later on there is a failure on a Muni bus, the finger pointing will begin; no one has ANY VISIBILITY into the issue. For example, how much of the $1 is left on my card? I don't know!  The Muni opperator can't see your balance so he'll undoubtably say that Metro didn't register your money.  Metro will say "it Wasn't a transfer on second boarding" what ever that means.  Are you going to spend thankless hours discussing your lost money with employees, perhaps ones scattered all over Los Angeles, to restore your lost money, I think not!

I got the impression that the Toonerville Trolley/ subway TAP turnstiles displays the balance, so I will follow up on that. I asked an  unusually cooperative bus driver if he could check my TAP "cash" balance and he confirmed that CCMBL, notwithstanding that the driver couldn't tell me, took the correct transfer amount, .75, from the card.  I am not sure that all drivers will be so cooperative and have very littleb advise about what to do if your balance is incorrect.  Basically, you could note the organization, bus route and direction along with the bus number of everything involved in the transfer. E. g., Metro 40 SB (South Bound) #9429, Torrance 8 SB #8103 - you could then, just before you tapped, ask the driver to report your TAP balance. and note that amount so that you will have a running balance.  If Torrance bus took too much money —full Fare instead of .75, you could contact the Torrance Transit organization an hope ...

But here is my solution in steps, 1. WILL NOT USE TRANSFERS and WILL NOT MAINTAIN A TAP BALANCE- that will disappoint the Muni agencies and keep them from charging you full fare for your ride.

This is another politician cobbled together system without a thought to being user friendly.  The paper system was user friendly, you paid the transfer fee, obtained a physical transfer and off you went without care in the world.

Under the "munged" transfer system much has been overlooked.  Such as, I believe that the poorly defined "transfer on second boarding" will become the excuse du jour.  I see more occurrences of fare boxes out of service than I report in this blog.  So what is the back up plan when a fare box fails to provide what is needed to be communicated so that the proper amount for the transfer is properly deducted from ones TAP Card cash balance?  I do not believe that a process to cover the farebox out of service or operating incorrectly has been implemented!  So this is the resulting process: You, the passenger must pay full fare.  The people enconsed in the Taj Mahal, siting on fat chairs with their feet up on their desks will say: "Let 'em pay it, it's only a few bucks."

Some one, with some free time can help us all out by submitting a FOIA  (Freedom of Information Act) request to the LACMTA, along these lines:


1. Explain in detail, in writing, the implementation of "Transfer on second boarding".

2.  Fill in the form below in detail the amounts by category 

BOLD and UNDERLINE any amounts where the amount is greater than the amount that Metro was charging for paper transfers. Q: "Will the price of transfers increase?  A: "No".

Agency         Transfer cost deducted from the TAP Card's "stored value" 

                                   Regular    Senior   Student

Beach  Cities                   ?               ?             ?

Big Blue Bus                    ?              ?              ?

Culver City                       ?             ?               ?

DOT Shuttle                     ?              ?               ?

Foothill Transit                  ?             ?               ?
Long Beach Transit            ?              ?              ?

( Add, alphabetically an Muni Carriers who have been omitted from this list)

 3A. Describe in detail, in writing, the procedures established to prevent the rider from paying more than the paper transfer cost.

3B. Describe in detail, in writing, the rationale behind NOT implementing a receipting procedure.  It costs too much is NOT an acceptable rationale.

3C. Describe in detail, in writing, the reason for removing Day Pass sales from buses and making them only available at rail stations.  This removal is a punitive action against the people who rely on buses for the majority of their transportation needs. It slows down boarding is not an acceptable reason.

3D. Provide an answer , in writing, to this question: Is it true that once one uses a Muni transfer any Metro-to-Metro transfer stored on one's TAP Card is invalidated.

3C. Given multi-door boarding those who require fare box functions other than "TAPping in" can board through the rear door(s).

Eliminating Metro to Metro transfers, which is supported by many other agencies was a fare increase,  which was addressed by the day pass. Now the day pass has been made more inconvenient to buy, is a de facto fare increase And people ask: Why is the ridership down?

 The logic of "transfer on second boarding" is no doubt implemented —GIVEN MY INCOMPLETE UNDERSTANDING and the fact that no one to whom I posed the question  "What does "transfer on second boarding" mean? offered an answer— by a logical switch along these lines, the switch will be set to 1 if it is zero when boarding a Metro bus; if it is 1, at boarding, it will be set to zero.  1 take the mean of first boarding so when boarding a Muni bus, recognising a 1 means that you have had your "first" boarding on Metro, so this ride can count as a transfer, the TAP balance will be reduced by the amount of the transfer cost whatever that is, and the logical switch set to zero, preventing one from riding the next Muni bus as a transfer. ADVISORY: THERE MAY BE AS MANY THING WRONG WITH MY EXPLANATION AS THERE ARE WITH THE LACMTA's  system. My intent is to attempt to understand an approach that might be used, rather than to divine the actual system functions. But I promise to develop my explanation as I learn more.

I read lengthy individual complaints about the TAP Card on-line and the fact that the LACMTA  is holding over a $1,300,000 "stranded" expired TAP Card balances, without an easy method of reclamation for the expired card holders (That was in 2015 in a piece by the LA Weekly).  My guess is that by now the LACMTA may have a way to refund the .75  left on the old card; but you'll probably have to pay a $5 service fee, perhaps $4.25?? 

This bus poster was expired but a graffitist didn't mind


The graffitists have done a professional job of "tagging" this poster. We'll have to follow up on this because it appears to be a work in progress.

Bus Flags without Stop Number

This is just another example of quite a number of bus flags which don't have stop numbers indicated. The intention was to be able to text the Next Bus, oops, I mean the Next Trip system. This Mole will never understand the reason  was it was renamed  from the original developers and owners designation, Next Bus, to Next Trip. 

2018-08-27: around 08:30 on board a 212 bus, northbound:  The woman across the aisle is playing music, not too loudly, but just loud enough so that I can't read.  She gets of after a few stop and I find that I can hear the nonstop chatter f a man bragging about his fantasy football trading "deals".  O course this goes on for the rest of my trip.

As I debus, a 300+ pound man, dressed for an Arctic winter, attempts to obtain a free ride by entering against the flow of exiting passengers. i tell hm to wait and he does, then stooping over. makes good his ploy.

I ride the Expo line to a bus and the bus to Santa Monica Bvd.  As I exit. a bicyclist an two electric scooters come speeding u the pavement. Neither wearing helmets.  Two infractions!

2018-03-18 morning @LAXCBC

Underscoring the fact that there is no security anywhere in the LACMTA system, here we see someone sleeping into the morning.  Over several days at the LAXCBC, I've seen several men micturating near or behind the on-site skip located in the north-east corner of LAXCBC.  Of course there is never any security at the center to put a stop to this kind of behaviour.

2018-05-13:  As your Mole waits for a bus, he must stand because someone else has claimed the bus bench.

WHAT Bus an I aboard?

2018-05-23 around 14:30, on board a bus: But Which Bus? The schedules in the rack should be some help, but that is not the case.  although there are more than seven schedules in the rack, none of them are for the 232 Line bus!  This is frequently the case with the LACMTA and their contractors.  It was a line contracted by MV Transportation, the 232 Line.

Early morning At the LAXCBC

Someone is enjoying an early morning nap at the LAXCBC.  They are aware that they will never be awoken by a security patrol.

Stop Number as a Texting Artifact!

These signs are rarely seen these days.  But they can be found by the careful observer. 

Texting for the bus arrival times has been a highly hyped feature and now stop numbers seem to be disappearing from the flags?  

Is this yet another case of the LACMTA becoming enamoured with something that is too costly, or requires too much maintenance to continue?  Think TransiTV!

Your mole has theories: Either (1) they put signs up in the wrong order; (2) the texting load was to great for the LACMTA's IT infrastructure;  (3) they found a way to charge for the service using an "app";

These signs keep reappearing, as if by magic?

And of one is to believe the Metro website
The section of a metro.net webpage (above, highlighting - Mole) indicates that they are still installing stop numbers; yet many, many have just disappeared.
The highlighted section reads: We are making plans to place these numbers on our bus stop signs (flags - Mole) on the street.

All that needs be done is to add stop numbers!

It appears that la Taupe has to do everything.  Well here it is, a typical bus schedule, this one for the 102 line, which shows stop numbers which he added.  The LACMTA will have no excuse for not having done this before the next "shakeup" (i.e., semiannual schedule change). Although every stop will not be available as the schedule only shows timed points— one will still be able to estimate a given bus's time of arrival at a nearby stop.  This will be true even when the schedule, is old because the stop numbers should not change.

2018-03-23 on board a southbound 740 bus: the woman behind me has been carrying on a "louder than necessary" cell phone conversation and I avoid it a best I can.  Then she starts explain Los Angeles Mass transit: "The Rapid bus stops at major streets.  The regular bus stops at every M. F-ing stop.  If the rapid doesn't stop where you want it to, then you have to walk.  If you don't wanna walk, then you have to ride the bus that stops at every M. F-ing stop. (she said the complete words).

Why is ridership down? Really, who would ride in such company if they didn't have to or they felt compelled to write a blog? :-)?

The worst ever trip that I have ridden is the 115 to/from Playa del Rey at going to or returning from school times.  One can hear the N-word more times in half an hour than most people hear it in a life time.  One can also hear quite a few other unpleasant words, as well. The drivers have to put up with a lot, too! 

2018-03-24  aboard a southbound 740 bus: A woman boards and proceeds down the aisle opening windows as she goes.  A man takes exception to her actions and says: "It's cold and I don't feel well" as he closes the window. She returns and opens the window again, he closes it.  She asks: "I open it, you close it.  Are we going to continue like that?"  He replies, "yes".  She responds:  Nobody cares that you're sick , you old F...!  Your mole thinks, if this woman didn't have bad manners, she would have none at all!
Meanwhile, the LACMTA wonders why ridership is down.
As promised here are la Taupe's  estimate of the costs involved in affixing these texting Artifact signs and removing them.  But no costs have been developed for replacing some of the signs??

Stop Number Signs Install & remove Costs

The above is portion of my spread sheet which shows your Mole's total estimated costs in US$ for the installation an partial removal (pictured above is a reinstalled signl).

There are 15,967 bus stops, along an estimated 2,661 miles of bus routes, transportation and labor costs.  I estimated that a 5 person crew could install 300 stop number signs per day, remove 600 signs per day and that there would be four of these crews in operation.
The LACMTA may say either (1) "we could never had done it so cheaply!" or (2) "He is way too high!" Or (3) An even larger figure if the work contracted. We will never know.  But when your read (vide supra) about the $8,000,000 they plan to spend on two new and fixing up two or three existing toilets, they will probably say (3).

One can find an excellent guide to Next Bus texting here.  But wait, this is not produced by the LACMTA, it is the very professional work og the Houston TX Metro —I should have known! The LACMTA. for some inexplicable reason put up stop numbers and then took most of them down??

Promises Made

Promises Ignored

We now know that these promises have been ignored  
They have stopped numbering stops while suppressing that fact.  However, according to their web site, they have a "Way" of texting intersections and finding arrival time*.   It is shown below.



*Excerpted from www.metro.net

Please click on the image above, TWICE. to obtain the largest view.   Now, it is virtually impossible to study anything done by the LACMTA without finding an error!  In this case, THE SYMBOL that they inserted is definitely NOT an ampersand "&"!

Lets take a break and listen to a song about Los Angeles Street Names and a famous Los Angeles intersection.

Thank you!, youtube.com  and Loop66 for the upload.

I tried The LACMTA Way,  using the pico & sepulveda intersection on my iPhone; here are the results.  N.B. like many quriky things about iPhones, I had to hack my text screen shot which was a PNG file and too big?? to copy to my computer; I had the trim it and couldn't easily fit "stop" - so I photo edited "STOP." into the photo. My next cell phone will be a Samsung (Seven Stars in korean)  :-).

Given that he couldn't reproduce their intersection bus stop sample, you can see what la Taupe means about the LACMTA's interminal "botching of things".

Crenshaw Line - Rapid Transit

This portion of the Crenshaw Line is rapid transit, i.e., grade separated (Manchester at La Brea). 

Crenshaw Line - Mass Transit (In Process)

This portion of the Crenshaw Line is at grade (Arbor Vitae north of 
Aviation) and therefore mass transit. It is a streetcar that will bring traffic on this busy street to a halt and possibly halt itself and definitely proceed at a reduced sped, after the barriers are lowered and then creep across the street.  

At one time the LACMTA knew how to build rapid transit, example: the Green Line.  They stopped building rapid transit when they felt that saving money was more important. A likely decision when you consider that LACMTA management almost never ride their system.  It management rode the lines, all stations and bus centers would have restrooms!


La Taupe took a ride to the valley and discovered this!

CLICK HERE to hear the announcement.

If would be a good idea if the LACMTA would make up its mind if it has one— about how it would deliver bus arrival announcements.  By text message, no that seems to be mostly abandoned?  By buttons, like the one shown above; no that seem an expensive way to do it, there seem to be very few of them and has the additional disadvantage of being exposed to vandalism. 

I now use text and that seems to be the way the BBB and TT and others have adopted.  From my computer I use NextBUS.com It produces an nice clean format as shown below.

Next Bus is GREAT!
At the bottom of the screen:
"Valid as of Monday, February 19, 2018 3:03 PM"
is displayed.  One can perform the simple addition to determine that the next bus will show up at around 15:08 and the one after that at about 15:37.

For those who like maps, nextbus offers a map option as pictured below.

Next Bus Maps are GREAT, too!

Please visit the site and acquaint yourself with the agencies it serves in the United States. It travels well! :-)

Its alive!

Crenshaw Line, Expo Line (and other lines) as Mess Transit!

Combine rapid and mass Transit in one line and you have created Mess Transit.


Bringing better service to others, by bypassing you♪

So, equal taxation but unequal provision of service that is the LACMTA way.  But it is time to bring an end to that approach.  This Mole has commented on the Rapid service in the past.  Pointing out that Rapid lines don't always stop when the cross other LACMTA lines, nor do they stop at county facilities, e.g., the excellent Los Angeles County Libraries.  Why not?  Well one could ask the Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Association.
So what if the line took six minutes longer but, some students could get to a library sooner.  And while they're at it, stops should be added for Los Angeles City Libraries too!

 This Is Not Rapid Transit

The photo above concretises the idea that the EXPO line will not deliver deterministic travel because, look at the signals and the traffic folks, it isn’t RAPID TRANSIT.

At one time the LACMTA knew how to build RAPID Mass Transit, viz. the Green Line.  Take the Green Line ratio of aerial portions of the line to total length of the line, let's call this the Mole's Index of Rapidity [MIR in acronimic form].

 For the Green Line the ratio is 100/100!  Not so with other recently  built lines; the Expo and Crenshaw Lines which both have lower indices of Rapidity.  Any value less than 1 shows that determinate travel times are impossible. The overall MIR for the LACMTA's built portion in miles is 20/105 which is equal to 0.1904 ... much less than 1! The result is a fifth class transportation system; one befitting a third-world country.

Your Mole feels that by showing you month-by-month examples of the LACMTA's  failures, you will come to see that throwing more money at this dysfunctional organisation is not the path to solution. It is a direct path to more money wasting by the LACMTA.

Eye (and Ear) to the Rail

Transit as unseen and unimagined by the LACMTA

The LACMTA (Subordinate to LAWA)


Every Which Way But Right!


Four (OR Five) Seats to LAX!

The LACMTA Tries Again; Asymptotically to LAX!


Metro is the worst way from the City Center to the Airport, LAX, that is!

The purpose of this section is to make people aware that the LACMTA is not home to many problem solvers. I hope to accomplish this end by presenting the solutions adopted by other cities, some in foreign countries, in solving the city to airport rapid transportation challenge.

Cautionary Note: Those employed by the LACMTA, LAWA  or CHSRA should NOT view the following video(s). The speed of the train(s), the fact that they neither share the right of way nor stop at stop lights, because they are truly rapid transit, will likely make you dizzy, nauseous, confuse and frighten you.

FINAL WARNING: N.B. LACMTA, LAWA OR CHSRA staff and management, avoid cognitive dissonance, DO NOT CLICK on THE LINK BELOW!

While the LACMTA attempts to hype its Toonerville Trolley system and CHSRA ponders the necessity of safety features, forward thinking planners in 2007  have already bullet trains at speeds in excess of those planned for California.

This section has been devoted to pointing that the LACMTA is far behind the rest of the world in rapid transit.  La Taupe has pointed out that fact on innumerable occasions.  Their approach, rather than providing Los Angeles with a transportation legacy of which to be proud, prides themselves on building cheap, loo-less infrastructure. 

CHSRA struggles with "Bullet Train" technology of the past, while the rest of the world is building high-speed comfortable Mag-Lev trains.

Here is the Orange Line in Lahore Pakistan!

Now some might consider Pakistan to be a third world country, but consider that they have built an elevated rail system which means that it is RAPID TRANSIT, with deterministic travel times; it places them far ahead of the LACMTA with its Toonerville Trolleys. 


DISCOVER MAGAZINE reports that all spiril galaxies, without regard to size, complete one revolution in 1,000,000,000 years. If we estimate a human life-span to be 100 years and represent that life-span as a portionof a galatic revolution it could be expressed as 100/1,000,000,000 = a very small fraction of a Galatic Revolution.

How many complete rotations has the Milky Way made since formation?  Along with other interesting information!

Also please see this very interesting story from Science Daily, dated Aug. 1, 2018.

 Fare Box OOS and related Lists of Shame

I.D. Numbers of buses with Out of Service Fare Boxes:  
2018-04-15; Bus #N/A  Westbound 117 Line.

Note: No or few entries above do not necessarily mean all fare boxes are in operation.

I.D.Numbers of Distracted Drivers: xxxxx (i);
None included here, but observations of a minor nature may be included in the main posting;
Codes: (i) Extended conversation(s) with passenger(s) or (ii) cell phone call(s). Frequently, details can be found in the text above, (ii*) cell phone call(s) which are aggravated by some other action, (iii) Self-distracted. Codes (ii*) and (iii) will ALWAYS be explained in the posting.

I.D. Numbers of Buses Defaced by WhoIs stickers: xxxx;
~UR or +UR = (+URsticker and the ugly residue left after passengers partly remove the sticker. (~UR) = Only the ugly residue left after passengers almost completely remove the sticker. +L = an old (legacy) sticker black letters on a plain white background –these are the original form of the defacement.
* Another reason for displaying the operator's ID on the internal display and the headsign.

ID numbers of Buses whose Head and Tailsigns disagree: Not noted xxxx/xxxx;
Format is Bus number followed by Headsign number/Tailsign number.

ID numbers of Buses without Braille signs: xxxx;

METRO drivers Lack of Basic Technical Skills
The format is Driver number F[{Y/-n/+n}] C[{Y/N+/-}]. Meaning of F if Y the driver stopped with the Bus stop “flag pole” somewhere between the bus front door frames. A negative number, e.g., -3 is the approximate distance in metres (think yards dear readers) between the nearest bus door vertical frame member and the flag pole signifying that the bus stopped short of the flag. A positive number, e.g., +3 (metres) is the approximate distance between the nearest bus door vertical frame member and the flag pole signifying that the bus stopped past the flag. The value for C[{Y/N}], “Y” tells us that the driver stopped within an easy step from the curb to the bus, “N” means it was NOT an easy step from the curb to the bus. It is this Mole's belief that an average experienced good driver should be able to control his bus so as to position in near the curb and with the flag pole slightly to the front of the bus.

I.D. numbers of drivers who are unable or unwilling to position their buses parallel to the curb, a short step from the curb and/or equidistant from the vehicles exits. At the present time (2016-05-31) there are too many drivers to name, whose skill at parallel parking is deficient .
XXXXX F[+0] C[Y]; F[+7], C[Y]; xxxxx F[Y], C[Y]; xxxxxF[Y], C[Y]; N.B. distances are in metres, think yards.
13 metres is this is MORE than a 40 foot bus length. nnnnn* = Contract Driver

I.D. numbers of drivers who are almost guaranteed to give you a Rough and Jerky (R& J) ride: xxxxx;

I.D. numbers of drivers who will give you a potentially life-threatening ride:
Codes: S = not wearing seat belts; J = bad judgment (unsafe driving practices).

La Taupe's Abréviations
ADADO = Automatic Destination Announcement (on) Door Opening. This feature is installed on many buses and operates on extremely few. Another “money down the toilet” LACMTA investment. La Taupe that this is intended for the visually impaired because people who can see can read the “head signs”.

ASAS = Automatic Stop Announcement System the GPS (Global Positioning System) driven mechanism for generating audio for the upcoming stops. N.B. Because of the low power (read weak) processors used in the on-board stops may be too close to identify stops separately. This is known as a granularity problem. Then too, if the driver operates the bus at speed above the speed limit you will find the system “back announcing” stops which you have already passed. I find that this will NOT keep some drivers from complaining “that you didn’t signal (ring) in time”. They don’t understand their relationship to the system and how, by driving faster than the GPS computer, they can bias it.

BART = Bay Area Rapid Transit – Please note the use of the word “Rapid” because it is a word we almost never hear in Los Angeles.

BBB = Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus

CHSRA = California High-Speed Rail Authority, which is the equivalent, in more
ways than one, of the LACMTA.

CC or CCMBL = Culver City (Municipal) Bus (Lines)

CCTC = Culver City Transportation Center this is the place formerly known as FHMTC = the Fox Hills Mall Transportation Center (Sepulveda& Slauson)

DTLA = DownTown Los Angeles

FFE = Full Fare Equivalent (presently $1.75)

GTrans (Gardena transit?) formerly GMBL = Gardena Municipal Bus lines

ITC = Inglewood Transit Center

LAWA = Los Angeles World Airports.

LAXCBC = the LAX City Bus Center.

LDOT = Los Angeles Department of Transportation

OCTA = Orange County Transportation Authority.

OOS = Out Of Service.

Rapid Transit = does not compete for right of way, that is, it will not run at grade unless it has EXCLUSIVE DEDICATED USE of the right of way).

R&J = Rough and Jerky [ride].

TT= Torrance Transit.

T1= the normal type of driver/staff.

T2= is the non-stop talker type of driver/staff, on the phone or to passengers,

T3= the uncommunicative type of driver/staff, sometimes surly.

WLATC = the West Los Angeles Transportation Center (Fairfax & Apple)

Su Topos Disclaimer and apologia
Your Mole always attempts to write an easy-on-the-eyes page using text input. Blogger.com however, has other ideas and will often not stay with a single font type or point size, produces extraneous spacing and etc. I wish I had time to debug the HTML which they produce, it is NOT the straight text which I pasted into the form, but I don’t. Therefore, I apologize on behalf of Blogger.com for the changes which they make, of which I do not approve. Sometimes, what I see, thankfully you don’t, is 24 point type –it is giant and other times they swallow my text, although it still seems to be there. In fairness to them, things seem better, although this is partly because I do understand which of their “features” do the most damage to me and consequently do not use them. Communicating these problems to them, for me, is something like having teeth extracted without the benefit of anesthetic, actually it is less fun than that. By their design, there is no simple e-mailing them with "Please look at my say, posting of 2009-06-28, it is weird!” I have been submitting feedback and experiences slow but positive progress. Until all issues are resolved, lo siento. [Addenda 2014-07-31]: Things have been much better lately. There is a more responsive feedback system now. [Addenda 2015-08-22]: Recently, even the "Feedback" mechanism has failed to submit problems. [2015-12-31] The feedback section disallows screen shots which show problems with the "final posting", such as, orange sections which cover blocks of text and change the font size. All it would take is allowing and attachment. But, ... [Addenda 2016-03-31] Since Blogger.com forced me to learn HTML 5, I can fix "many" of the problems which apparently were caused by using Word notation in "imported" files. The mystery failure to save problem still occurs but have diminished. [insert crossed fingers icon here :-) ].

I like blogger.com very much, and IF things ever normalise, I will consider deleting this "Disclaimer and apologia" section.

Your Mole’s Copyright Statement

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Your Moles Conflict of Interest Statement
This is to certify that I, the blogger who is known as the LAmetroMole, with respect to this blog, except as described below, am not now nor at any time during the past year have been, nor is it my current intention to ever be:

1) A participant, directly or indirectly, in any arrangement, agreement, investment, or other activity with any vendor, supplier, or other party doing business with any of the entities about which I have written, which has resulted or could result in personal benefit to me.

2) A recipient, directly or indirectly, of any salary payments or loans or gifts of any kind or any free service or discounts or other fees from or on behalf of any person or organisation engaged in any transaction with any of the entities about which I have written.

Any exceptions to 1 or 2 above are stated below with a full description of the transactions and of the interest, whether direct or indirect, which I have (or have had during the past year) in the persons or organisations having transactions with any of the entities about which I have written.
There are no exceptions.

Date: 2009-06-24 s/LametroMole

Works Cited  

Please use the links found in “Works Cited” and read all the cited articles. 
Place the cursor over the unreadable text below. Then drag the cursor down while holding the left Mouse button DOWN. it will highlight and make the text readable Or alternatively, Press and hold the Ctrl key and press and release the a key.  When finished click on any white space to clear the highlighting. This has been a continuing challange! I have applied all the "corrections I've found so far.  I won't give up! ( Mole)

Ellingson,  Annlee, “Elon Musk’s Boring Co. proposes to dig a tunnel to Dodger Stadium.  LA. Biz. Aug. 16, 2018. WEB. https://www.bizjournals.com/losangeles/news/2018/08/16/elon-musk-wants-to-dig-a-tunnel-to-dodger-stadium.html


Nelson, Laura J. “L.A.'s rail system will be first in the U.S. to use scanners that detect explosives”. Los Angeles Times. Aug, 2018. Web. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-metro-body-scanners-20180814-story.html 


Nelson², Laura J. “L.A. officials moved to ban rental scooters in March. So why are they everywhere?”. Los Angeles Times. Aug, 16, 2018. Web. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-scooter-ban-20180815-story.html


Nelson³, Laura J.“Man struck by train after 11 minutes unconscious on the tracks sues L.A. Metro”. Los Angeles Times. Aug. 6, 2018. Web. http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-gold-line-amputation-20180806-story.html

Rosenfeld, David.Here’s how they roll: The electric scooter phenomenon at a glance”.  Los Angeles Daily News. Aug. 3, 2018. Web. https://www.dailynews.com/2018/08/03/heres-how-they-roll-the-electric-scooter-phenomenon-at-a-glance/

Rosenfeld, David.  "Electric scooters sweep the coastal communities – and rev up turmoil for some leaders", The Beach Reporter. Aug. 3, 2018. Web. https://www.dailybreeze.com/2018/08/03/electric-scooters-sweep-the-coastal-communities-and-rev-up-turmoil-for-some-leaders/ 

Staff.  "Proposed LA Streetcar Moves Forward With $590M Funding Plan". nbclosangeles.com. Aug, 11, 2018. Web. nbclosangeles.com/news/local/LA-Streetcar-Moves-Forward-Funding-Plan-490636661.html

Vartabedian, Ralph. “Inflation and delays could add billions more to bullet train project costs”. Los Angeles Times. Aug. 26, 218. Web. http://www.latimes.com/local/california/la-me-bullet-train-cost-20180826-story.html

An artifact of the streets of Los Angeles, created by a brother Mole!

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The above is ### 30 ### in Braille


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