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“Please help me persuade Transport for London to make certain bus drivers less prejudiced towards travelling with pets :)” – Andy Williamson

Description

Andy Williamson

I am somewhat disappointed in the conduct of a driver of vehicle registration number LX53 JLP. The bus number is 17951 and the route was the 177 to Thamesmead.

On Wednesday 13th February at approximately 5pm at the stop by The Cutty Sark in Greenwich, the driver of the vehicle refused me to travel with my dog, who was extremely well behaved, clean, controlled properly on a suitable lead and of no nuisance or inconvenience to any passenger or the driver.

When the driver said I could not come on the bus with my dog, I questioned if this was a regulation or bye-law that I was not aware of. I have taken my dog on hundreds of buses without incident or complaint and have never been refused travel or asked to leave during a journey.

The driver's response to my questioning why I was not permitted travel was 'I don't like dogs, and that is not coming on my bus.'

I would be grateful if you could clarify whether he has the discretion to refuse my travel, and whether the fact that he does not like dogs is a good enough reason to refuse someone travel. I believe I had already touched in with my Oyster card when the driver refused my travel.

The driver searched, unsuccessfully, in his handbook/manual for the points where it stated he was at liberty to refuse my travel.
With other passengers complaining about the delay, the driver discourteously told me I could travel but would have to go to the upper deck.

There was sufficient room on the lower deck, so I would appreciate if you could clarify this for my future reference. Is it at the driver's discretion where I sit on the bus, if there are sufficient seats for a person a pet companion?

There are two reasons I challenged being told what deck to go to by a, in my opinion, rude, aggressive driver.

Firstly, it is more difficult to take my dog up the stairs and navigate the ailse on the upper deck.

Secondly, I had a recent injury to my ankle which makes walking up the stairs somewhat painful.

The exchange between myself and the driver went something like this:

Driver: You can get on, but you have to go upstairs, otherwise we are not going anywhere.

Me: What if I don't want to go upstairs? What if I have a bad foot?

Driver: You don't look like you have a bad foot, you got on the bus fine.

Personally, I don't feel this is the correct attitude from the driver. I am happy to review the cctv with audio to see if my memory serves me correct, or whether I have misinterpreted the facts. What I am sure anyone viewing the recording will find is that I remained calm and assertive throughout the exchange and did not swear, shout or act aggressively at any time.

I am interested to know what the company policy is on extending politeness and professionalism towards paying customers? I feel that I was done a disservice on this day and I can only speculate on how many other responsible pet owners this prejudiced driver has refused travel to.

In summary, I chose not to go to the upper deck of the bus and left the bus in order that the passengers were not further delayed.

I am most interested in your response, in particular what form of communication you will have with the driver, as he was flippant and nonchalant in response to me saying I would take my complaint further. He refused to provide me with his name, but I can provide an accurate description.

I would like to thank-you for taking time to read this. But please make no mistake; I am prepared to take this complaint all the way.

Yours faithfully,

Andy Williamson
[email address removed but sent to TfL]

Problem History

  • 1 Andy Williamson reported the issue on FixMyTransport. close 06:57 01 Mar 2013
  • 2 Andy Williamson wrote to Transport for London close 06:57 01 Mar 2013

    Here is the letter that Andy Williamson wrote.

    Driver conduct

    I am somewhat disappointed in the conduct of a driver of vehicle registration number LX53 JLP. The bus number is 17951 and the route was the 177 to Thamesmead.

    On Wednesday 13th February at approximately 5pm at the stop by The Cutty Sark in Greenwich, the driver of the vehicle refused me to travel with my dog, who was extremely well behaved, clean, controlled properly on a suitable lead and of no nuisance or inconvenience to any passenger or the driver.

    When the driver said I could not come on the bus with my dog, I questioned if this was a regulation or bye-law that I was not aware of. I have taken my dog on hundreds of buses without incident or complaint and have never been refused travel or asked to leave during a journey.

    The driver's response to my questioning why I was not permitted travel was 'I don't like dogs, and that is not coming on my bus.'

    I would be grateful if you could clarify whether he has the discretion to refuse my travel, and whether the fact that he does not like dogs is a good enough reason to refuse someone travel. I believe I had already touched in with my Oyster card when the driver refused my travel.

    The driver searched, unsuccessfully, in his handbook/manual for the points where it stated he was at liberty to refuse my travel.
    With other passengers complaining about the delay, the driver discourteously told me I could travel but would have to go to the upper deck.

    There was sufficient room on the lower deck, so I would appreciate if you could clarify this for my future reference. Is it at the driver's discretion where I sit on the bus, if there are sufficient seats for a person a pet companion?

    There are two reasons I challenged being told what deck to go to by a, in my opinion, rude, aggressive driver.

    Firstly, it is more difficult to take my dog up the stairs and navigate the ailse on the upper deck.

    Secondly, I had a recent injury to my ankle which makes walking up the stairs somewhat painful.

    The exchange between myself and the driver went something like this:

    Driver: You can get on, but you have to go upstairs, otherwise we are not going anywhere.

    Me: What if I don't want to go upstairs? What if I have a bad foot?

    Driver: You don't look like you have a bad foot, you got on the bus fine.

    Personally, I don't feel this is the correct attitude from the driver. I am happy to review the cctv with audio to see if my memory serves me correct, or whether I have misinterpreted the facts. What I am sure anyone viewing the recording will find is that I remained calm and assertive throughout the exchange and did not swear, shout or act aggressively at any time.

    I am interested to know what the company policy is on extending politeness and professionalism towards paying customers? I feel that I was done a disservice on this day and I can only speculate on how many other responsible pet owners this prejudiced driver has refused travel to.

    In summary, I chose not to go to the upper deck of the bus and left the bus in order that the passengers were not further delayed.

    I am most interested in your response, in particular what form of communication you will have with the driver, as he was flippant and nonchalant in response to me saying I would take my complaint further. He refused to provide me with his name, but I can provide an accurate description.

    I would like to thank-you for taking time to read this. But please make no mistake; I am prepared to take this complaint all the way.

    Yours faithfully,

    Andy Williamson
    [email address removed but sent to TfL]

  • 3 [email address] responded to Andy Williamson close 07:00 01 Mar 2013
    Thank you for your email. We can now confirm that this has been
    received.

    For further information about the Surface Transport Complaints
    and Feedback Policy including timescales, please see
    [1]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/about-tf...

    Problems with roadworks or other street faults? In support of
    the Mayor’s Streetworks Code of Conduct to help cut congestion,
    please report these issues by visiting
    [2]http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/reportas...

    show quoted sections

    References

    Visible links
    1. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/about-tf...
    2. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/reportas...
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