TransLink trials new bus tires on 500 buses as part of winter readiness measures
TransLink is preparing transit services for the winter season in Metro Vancouver. Among the winter readiness measures, Coast Mountain Bus Company (CMBC) will be testing the winter performance of a newly available bus tire to inform future decisions about CMBC tires.
The new winter-rated tires feature a different tread pattern, on one third of the fleet – which equates to approximately 500 buses. The tires currently used on CMBC’s fleet are winter-rated tires which are replaced proactively to keep the tread in good condition. They carry the Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake rating, the highest winter rating available for bus tires.
The tires being tested are new to the market and carry the same Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake winter rating. Braking, fuel economy, and wear on tire tread over time will be compared.
Actions to keep buses moving include:
- Coordinating with municipalities on snow-clearing if priority routes are impacted.
- Spreading anti-icing solution on trolley wires with de-icing trucks.
- Using brass cutters on some trolley buses to cut through ice on trolley wires.
- Installing tire socks on buses on portions of routes with heavy snowfall and implementing snow shuttles for snow routes, depending on the weather.
- Replacing articulated buses with 40’ conventional buses on some routes, as they are more agile in slippery areas.
- Salting and sanding bus exchange walking surfaces.
Actions to keep SkyTrain moving include:
- Using a de-icing train to keep the power rail free from ice buildup.
- Running trains overnight to stop snow from building up in the guideway.
- Coupling Millennium Line trains into four-car configurations to increase capacity.
- Positioning SkyTrain attendants at the front of each Expo and Millennium Line train to improve reliability on the system by limiting emergency braking triggered by heavy snowfall.
- Using teams on SkyTrain platforms to prevent ice build-up on the doors.
- Salting/sanding entrances and walkways for SkyTrain and West Coast Express stations.