The Land Transport Authority (LTA) said it is working with public transport operator SMRT to ease over-crowding on bus service 190.As part of the effort, six additional half-way trips have been put into service on Friday nights, starting from October 18.
Empty buses are being deployed midway from Somerset Station bus stop at Orchard Road to help ease crowding and ensure that commuters along the route can board the bus on Friday nights.
LTA said these six extra half-way trips are in addition to the 24 half-way scheduled bus trips that SMRT is already running from the YMCA bus stop.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, LTA also said it is working with SMRT to study if it is feasible to add additional trips on the service on weekdays from 9.30pm to 10.30pm to cater to the increase in commuters when shops along Orchard Road close for the day.
The authority also said it has investigated the over-crowding on service 190 buses on October 4 and the long waiting time for commuters at Thong Teck Building bus stop that evening.
It found that a bus breakdown and traffic congestion along PIE and Chua Chu Kang Way had affected the bus service that evening.
As a result, instead of the 39 scheduled bus trips between 9pm to midnight, SMRT operated only 33 trips.
LTA said SMRT should have responded better to the delays caused by the bus breakdown and traffic congestion.
SMRT should also have taken measures to maintain service levels on service 190, which typically has high demand in the city area during the evenings, LTA added.
In addition to putting in more bus trips to the service, LTA said it has also asked SMRT to deploy more staff to the affected bus stops to help manage commuters boarding buses.
The LTA statement comes in the wake of a viral video from a frustrated commuter who watched over a dozen crowded buses pass by on Friday, October 4.