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New buses for Ireland & UK being recalled from Wrights

  • 22-07-2019 11:48pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 7,691 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990
    Registered User


    I heard about this development from an another transport related forum tonight. It's being reported there that new SG's & new WH's ordered for 2019 at Dublin Bus have been recalled back to Wrights due to some height issue which primarily affects the saloon of the lower decks of the buses. I have never heard of a situation like this one from a bus manufacturer before. This is very surprising news to say the least.

    I have learned that AV's/AX's being put in storage by Dublin Bus will stay on for a bit longer to run bus services in the meantime. It has happened for BÉ as well. They have VMDs ordered from Wrights which may have to go back for a short period of time. I am not sure how GAI are dealing with this problem because they have 15 of these new buses in their fleet for this year.

    Wrights do manufacture buses for a large number of operators in the UK market as well with a lot of these buses being ordered & used for TFL in London.

    I wonder how many of these buses from operators in the UK will be brought back to Wrights in NI.

    This is just a embarrassing story from a bus manufacturer that is based just over the border in NI.


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Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,737 ✭✭✭ Yer Da sells Avon


    Go-Ahead's 191 buses were in service today as normal - I'm not sure if they're affected.

    I think the WHs have been withdrawn because the brakes don't work as they should. The driver hits the pedal and nothing happens for several seconds, which makes you instinctively press harder, which makes the bus come to a sudden halt. The Wright Streetlite has a similar issue, but they've sadly yet to be withdrawn. It's a shame that the NTA continues to buy their products.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    Go-Ahead's 191 buses were in service today as normal - I'm not sure if they're affected.

    I believe this is only affecting a certain number of buses but not the whole batch according to one of the people on the other thread on the tapatalk site and that the ones that went to GAI were not in the faulty batch but that remains to be seen. There is another issue with faulty doors on certain buses however that would certainly but be an easier fix than the ceiling issue. I would take this information with a pinch of salt tbh and wouldn't get too caried away with it.
    I think the WHs have been withdrawn because the brakes don't work as they should. The driver hits the pedal and nothing happens for several seconds, which makes you instinctively press harder, which makes the bus come to a sudden halt. The Wright Streetlite has a similar issue, but they've sadly yet to be withdrawn. It's a shame that the NTA continues to buy their products.

    The WHs are also supposed to fail to meet the NTAs guidelines when it comes to hybrid buses as they can not run purely on electric mode and require the diesel engine to be running at all times when on the road. So this would put the WH class out of the question for any further purchase of hybrid electric buses unless this is changed with a further update to the model which would allow the bus to run on electric mode.

    As for the NTA buying Wrightbus products as far I'm aware they don't have much choice as the most go for what is deemed the most competively advantageous tender under EU law when purchasing buses.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,737 ✭✭✭ Yer Da sells Avon


    Stephen15 wrote: »
    As for the NTA buying Wrightbus products as far I'm aware they don't have much choice as the most go for what is deemed the most competively advantageous tender under EU law when purchasing buses.

    When the warranty on the integral products (i.e. Wright chassis and body, as opposed to Volvo chassis and Wright body) expires, the NTA will find out just how competitive that tender was.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    When the warranty on the integral products (i.e. Wright chassis and body, as opposed to Volvo chassis and Wright body) expires, the NTA will find out just how competitive that tender was.

    I'm not fully up on the EU laws and the tendering process but it could be that it is more of a box ticking exercise rather than one which actually works in practice. But that's something you can probably blame Brussels or Strasbourg on not the NTA or CIE for a change.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,883 ✭✭✭ markpb
    Registered User


    Nothing in EU law says that you have to accept the cheapest tender. Most buyers use MEAT (most economically advantageous tender) which allows them to take into account things other than price.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    markpb wrote: »
    Nothing in EU law says that you have to accept the cheapest tender. Most buyers use MEAT (most economically advantageous tender) which shows them to take into account things other than price.

    Which Wrights submitted hence why the Streetlites were bought. What I'm saying is the MEAT process may be more of a box ticking excercise than actually being the case in reality.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 11,286 Mod ✭✭✭✭ devnull
    Moderator


    Stephen15 wrote: »
    I believe this is only affecting a certain number of buses but not the whole batch according to one of the people on the other thread on the tapatalk site and that the ones that went to GAI were not in the faulty batch but that remains to be seen. There is another issue with faulty doors on certain buses however that would certainly but be an easier fix than the ceiling issue.

    The problem with the doors is directly related to the issue with lower deck ceiling height I believe.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,883 ✭✭✭ markpb
    Registered User


    Stephen15 wrote: »
    Which Wrights submitted hence why the Streetlites were bought. What I'm is the MEAT process may be more of a box ticking excercise than actually being the case in reality.

    If NTA bought unsuitable buses, it doesn't mean that the process was a box ticking exercise. It could mean they got the tender requirements wrong or got the scoring scheme wrong (not providing enough marks for quality or references). It could mean that there wasn't enough evidence that the buses wouldn't be of decent quality and couldn't be excluded. It could equally be that the total cost (capital spend, running cost, cost driven by the impact of failures) was more attractive than the other tender submissions.

    Public tenders are complicated things. They're heavily regulated by EU law to ensure ensure the public body is being fair and transparent. Decisions are regularly challenged in court so public bodies are well aware that every i must have been fitted and every t crossed.

    No one here is involved in the process, we don't know what companies submitted and we don't know the requirements or scoring system.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭ john boye
    Registered User


    Surely this mishap would have to be considered when looking at any future bid Wright make in the tendering process? I assume it would be a mark against them in the quality scoring?


  • Registered Users Posts: 564 ✭✭✭ thenightman
    Registered User


    Nearly all 13's & 69's I saw today were VG's as opposed to the usual SG's. Typically might get a VG on one of these routes once every two weeks . Both morning and evening vehicles I was on were VG's today which is very rare, Would this recall craic have something to do with this, or just a coincidence?


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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 11,286 Mod ✭✭✭✭ devnull
    Moderator


    The effected batch have been pulled off service for both Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    Nearly all 13's & 69's I saw today were VG's as opposed to the usual SG's. Typically might get a VG on one of these routes once every two weeks . Both morning and evening vehicles I was on were VG's today which is very rare, Would this recall craic have something to do with this, or just a coincidence?

    The 69 is a Congyham Road route and that garage dosen't have any VGs unless there were Broadstone Euros on it. Are you sure they weren't GTs which are similar to VGs but have centre doors and the same style of seats as the SGs. The VGs could have been on the 13 but it would be very odd as it's one of the routes which the NTA mandates must be operated by dual door buses but that's not to say that single door buses wouldn't end up on it occasionally.


  • Registered Users Posts: 564 ✭✭✭ thenightman
    Registered User


    Probably GT's so. Always happy to see them as they are far more comfortable than the SG's.


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 15,561 Mod ✭✭✭✭ dfx-
    Moderator


    I have learned that AV's/AX's being put in storage by Dublin Bus will stay on for a bit longer to run bus services in the meantime. It has happened for BÉ as well. They have VMDs ordered from Wrights which may have to go back for a short period of time. I am not sure how GAI are dealing with this problem

    What's the size of batch affected? What's the seriousness of the fix?

    There's almost no AVs left. There's a few in the corner of Harristown I think and a few working in Summerhill. There's an ever dwindling number of AXs..Conyngham Road is nearly an SG/GT garage now.
    markpb wrote: »
    No one here is involved in the process, we don't know what companies submitted and we don't know the requirements or scoring system.

    So that thing about being transparent you were saying :) What do we actually know?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,737 ✭✭✭ Yer Da sells Avon


    Wrightbus appears to be in serious financial trouble at the moment.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-49082447


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,691 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990
    Registered User


    dfx- wrote: »
    What's the size of batch affected? What's the seriousness of the fix?

    There's almost no AVs left. There's a few in the corner of Harristown I think and a few working in Summerhill. There's an ever dwindling number of AXs..Conyngham Road is nearly an SG/GT garage now.

    I actually don't know how many buses are affected yet. I will put it as unspecified for now.
    Wrightbus appears to be in serious financial trouble at the moment.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-49082447

    Gulp. This news could not have happened at the worst possible time. If there is no intervention done for Wrights with any investors coming on board to buy a major share of the company particularly with Brexit possibly coming around the corner; this is not good news at all if it goes fully closed down with a major number of redundancies. You had to remember that the aeroplane manufacturer Bombardier closed down in NI with major redundancies a few months back. With Boris Johnson being PM later on today he could actually look at the latest developments going in Wrights & give his reaction to this news in the HoC. When he was London Mayor; Boris had his own bus design nicknamed the Borismaster or the New Bus for London manufactured for TfL from Wrights when he showed it at the end of the Beijing Olympics. If an NI MP gives a question to him in parliament later on today; he might give a few words on this current news being reported from NI.

    This could leave the tender for the hybrid bus trial here with potential issues because the NTA only have two options to buy new hybrid double deckers for now & that is from ADL or Volvo. According to Anne Graham on Newstalk recently; this hybrid bus tender is providing 600 hybrid buses for multiple operators like Bus Eireann, Dublin Bus & Go-Ahead Ireland. It will not only be stuck to operators in the Dublin area. These new buses will go to other places around the country as well. There are tons of city buses purchased over the years for Bus Eireann, Dublin Bus & Go-Ahead Ireland that currently use the Wright badge in their fleet. It will be really sad news if Wrights eventually does close down in NI. Their earlier double deckers like the VG's & GT's used in Dublin Bus & GAI are their best buses from the company. They are comfortable, reliable & work really well. I hope a solution is found soon because anything to do with sorting out finances & new investments for a major company is not an easy process. Hearing about job losses are not good either as people working there could hear the news that there jobs could be gone any time soon.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    devnull wrote: »
    The effected batch have been pulled off service for both Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann.

    Well if that's then it's not the entire 2019 batch as some had been suggesting as there are still some in service


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    This could leave the tender for the hybrid bus trial here with potential issues because the NTA only have two options to buy new hybrid double deckers for now & that is from ADL or Volvo. According to Anne Graham on Newstalk recently; this hybrid bus tender is providing 600 hybrid buses for multiple operators like Bus Eireann, Dublin Bus & Go-Ahead Ireland. It will not only be stuck to operators in the Dublin area. These new buses will go to other places around the country as well. There are tons of city buses purchased over the years for Bus Eireann, Dublin Bus & Go-Ahead Ireland that currently use the Wright badge in their fleet. It will be really sad news if Wrights eventually does close down in NI. Their earlier double deckers like the VG's & GT's used in Dublin Bus & GAI are their best buses from the company. They are comfortable, reliable & work really well. I hope a solution is found soon because anything to do with sorting out finances & new investments for a major company is not an easy process. Hearing about job losses are not good either as people working there could hear the news that there jobs could be gone any time soon.

    From what I gather Wright's struggles date back to before Brexit as they have struggled to keep up with ADL since the Enviro 400 and later the Enviro 400MMC have come on the market which have been game changers in terms of fuel consumption where the focus has been when it comes to buying new buses in recent years. Hence why Volvo and Wright's have been focusing on buses with low consumption like the B5TL and Streetlite in recent years.

    I think it's a problem here in Ireland that the market for RHD double deckers is so limited when it comes to buying city buses as your limited to three options really Volvo on Wright chassis, ADL and Wright intergral products like the Streetdeck. It's nearly like the way IE cannot get off the shelf rolling stock as they have to 5ft 3in gauge stock.

    Whereas on the continent LHD single deckers which are larger than ours and can take similar passenger numbers to double deckers there's lot's of choice for operators including Mercedez, Volvo, VDL, VanHool, Iveco, MAN, Scania, Solaris etc.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,683 ✭✭✭✭ punisher5112
    Registered User


    Does this have anything to do with the 2018 faulty batch????


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,683 ✭✭✭✭ punisher5112
    Registered User


    No :)


    consolidated reply, again, bear with me, I'm alone and unafraid and want to answer the questions, but only have so much time.

    Have you ever arrested someone who has gone on to receive the death penalty or life without parole (or any other long sentence) and how did it make you feel when you heard the ruling?

    Not that I recall, that level of offense is usually handled by the detectives or SWAT. I’m not a proponent of the death penalty FWIW.

    Being based in TX means you see your fair share of severe weather i.e. super-cells. As such, what type of relationship do you have with storm chasers? When you see a convoy going full tilt towards a storm producing a deadly tornado, do you flag them down and give them a ticket or acknowledge that the work they so provides valuable insight into better understanding these storms and plays a large role in saving multiple lives annually... or is it a case of "man there's an F3 or 4 barreling down on me, I'm not dealing with this sh*t now"?

    We don’t see many storm chasers where I am, that's more in very north TX. Just because they are chasing a storm doesn’t give them the right to imperil other members of the public by speeding or otherwise ignoring the laws. Yes, we are VERY busy during storms too.

    You mentioned an obscure law about selling cars at the weekend. Have you ever heard of anyone enforcing this or any other bizarre law and what was the result?

    Not really, these laws are artifacts or have some sort of historical or political baggage in their origin. We’re mostly involved with the penal code, traffic code, family code sort of thing.

    You’ve been doing this job for about a quarter of a century now so I’m presuming you have a good bit of foresight about how things may go. What is the one particular day or event where you know you’re going to be busy e.g. Fourth of July, big game or particular weather pattern?

    Just like in Ireland, bank holidays, big matches, festivals, pretty much any large gatherings of humans & alcohol have a fairly predictable outcome.

    What has been the toughest day/ shift you have put down and how did it affect you in the aftermath?

    Seeing a friend shot & killed, it was 20 years ago and still dealing with it. It wasn’t fun then and isn’t now either.

    Do you watch The First 48? Love that show.

    Seen bits & pieces, I sense it has a degree of being hand-picked/curated but it does show some of the day to day stuff.

    Have you ever seen Bosch? LAPD programme.
    No, never seen it

    Have you ever had to deal with an Irish person in a professional capacity? And if so, did they mortify the life out of you?

    Met a few, met a gang of lads acting the maggot, but then they were from Leitrim 😊

    I have many friends both serving cops and retired cops who work in various industries e.g. security and consulting. Trust when making friends, is something that they have found to be very difficult once retired. Is this something that you personally have found to be the case? Are most of your friends’ cops?

    I probably wouldn’t want to be friends with people who don’t like cops, not so much lack of trust, more just awareness of what the human race is like. I’d say about 50% of my friends are cops (or fire/EMS/military), but the rest are just random friends.

    When you were in training did ye have politeness classes? It's probably just a stereotype but a lot of cops on TV sound the same when dealing with the public, sir/madam etc.

    Not specifically as such, but we are encouraged to always start encounters politely. Being polite & decent gets you a long way in life, not just as a cop.

    How fast can you run? Is there a requirement to maintain a basic level of fitness?

    I can still clock a 7.30 mile but it’s getting harder (I’m 54), but I’m more of a distance runner. In TX all police agencies are required to have a “fitness assessment” which is not actually defined. We use a run/obstacle course or rowing test. It’s required twice a year.

    Have you ever left someone go (for a minor crime) just because they made you laugh?

    See above from Leitrim, they were just acting the maggot (or being from Leitrim…😊

    Do local forces tend to turn a blind eye (as best they can) to well ran instances of street racing? The kind of thing you'd see on 1320videos YouTube channel. 1/8-mile hits from a standstill in very quiet locations during the night, that sort of thing.
    Or is there a blanket zero tolerance policy like there is here in Ireland.

    We have a zero tolerance for street racing, its too dangerous & endangers the kids doing it and the general public.

    When the officers turned up, I had to come out at gunpoint at first to show I wasn't a threat. Once that was established, one was sound and was asking me about the Irish music I was listening to and where I was from/travelling to etc. while the other was like a pit-bull barking questions at me. Would this have been a tactic taught in training used to throw someone off, like good cop bad cop?? Or just a tired and grumpy cop?? It was all sorted in about 5 minutes.

    The good cop/bad cop is more of an interrogation technique, not really taught as a patrol technique. Sounds like he was a grumpy/tired or just rude. I hate when those guys show up on my calls, they pssi everyone off.

    over your career do you feel like you have developed or diminished any prejudices? not looking for any specifics or anything but i just would have presumed it would have been the case as no matter how much we all want to be moral citizens we all have our prejudices be they justified or not!

    I don’t feel especially prejudiced, I try to be balanced, but then it’s hard to be objective about yourself. Although I do have a friend who is ginger! I’m probably more jaded than anything else, you pretty quickly develop a “most people aren’t that bright” attitude, its very hard not to.

    why are American police so aggressive and eager to shoot?
    So far this year, other than the range, I have yet to draw my gun and have only drawn my taser once but did not need to use it. Baton hasn’t come out in years. Used pepper spray four years ago on an aggressive dog. Draw your own conclusions.
    See post about deadly force.

    Considering your life choice, if you had the opportunity to restart and do it all over again, would you go down the same route or choose a different career?

    Probably, I have no regrets, I generally don’t look back and say “man I shoulda done xxxx”

    Do you feel that this is because of your role (i.e. all incidents where guns are likely to be involved are handled by swat units?), your location or is my expectation for gun crime just too high.

    If we get a call of “shots fired” were going, it’s our job, that’s why were armed. Likewise, with any other gun related call. SWAT will get called out for a barricaded subject, hostages, felony warrant service, etc. But most of the time patrol officers ar

    Eh yes you are asking questions for the ama this isn't it....


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    Does this have anything to do with the 2018 faulty batch????

    Were there 2018 buses that were faulty aswell didn't here about that?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,382 ✭✭✭ AngryLips
    Registered User


    A political commentator (or maybe correspondent) on RTE lunchtime news today claimed that Wrights are a pro-Brexit business. Hard to have any sympathy for them if that's the case


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,683 ✭✭✭✭ punisher5112
    Registered User


    Stephen15 wrote: »
    Were there 2018 buses that were faulty aswell didn't here about that?

    The floors aren't pinned properly and shake and bang. You would swear there was an elephant up there even when empty.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 61,810 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011
    Moderator


    AngryLips wrote: »
    A political commentator (or maybe correspondent) on RTE lunchtime news today claimed that Wrights are a pro-Brexit business. Hard to have any sympathy for them if that's the case

    Owner is a devotee to the 'cause' - https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-36113730

    They are a company I would prefer if the Irish state did not deal with for other issues also; but there is a limited number of companies making RHD double deckers.


  • Registered Users Posts: 612 ✭✭✭ p_haugh
    Registered User


    Just seen SG562(one of the 191 reg buses) in service on O'Connell Street. I assume that means it wasn't part of a faulty batch?


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,933 ✭✭✭ GM228
    Registered User


    When the warranty on the integral products (i.e. Wright chassis and body, as opposed to Volvo chassis and Wright body) expires, the NTA will find out just how competitive that tender was.

    I assume we are just talking about the Streetlites here, all the double deckers have Volvo chassis.

    And what is there to suggest that a Wrights chassis is less inferior than a Volvo (assuming that is what you are suggesting).


    devnull wrote: »
    The problem with the doors is directly related to the issue with lower deck ceiling height I believe.

    It would appear that this is purely speculative and I'd have my doubts to be honest.

    The reason why I doubt it is because all the double deckers are made on already existing jigs with everything pre-drilled etc, how can some be OK and others incorrect? On a new build I could understand that a mistake could happen, but on an existing build? I have my doubts.

    One thing which nobody has mentioned is perhaps there is another issue, the doors are touching off the ceiling, so perhaps there is an issue with the doors as opposed to the ceilings?

    With nothing official the fact that some doors are hitting ceilings may suggest a door issue either, and until there is something more official than internet speculation we simply don't and won't know. If it is indeed a door as opposed to ceiling issue than fault may not lie with Wrights at all. The 2018 problems were also door problems I believe.

    Financial problems aside Wrights make a fairly decent product in terms of quality control, now some may say they are a cheap build etc, but that is down to keeping weight down to meet the latest Euro engine requirements.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    I wonder are the problems with the doors effecting the front doors, the centre doors or both?


  • Registered Users Posts: 411 ✭✭ ITV2
    Registered User


    its the centre doors only, and 7 SG type are off at D'brook depot.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,737 ✭✭✭ Yer Da sells Avon


    GM228 wrote: »
    And what is there to suggest that a Wrights chassis is less inferior than a Volvo (assuming that is what you are suggesting).

    Ask anyone who has driven a Wright Streetlite. They're inferior in every possible way. Terrible brakes, terrible steering, absolutely awful build quality. Like trying to drive a big boat on wheels.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 7,907 ✭✭✭ Stephen15


    GM228 wrote: »
    I assume we are just talking about the Streetlites here, all the double deckers have Volvo chassis.

    And what is there to suggest that a Wrights chassis is less inferior than a Volvo (assuming that is what you are suggesting).

    Well the Streetlite chassis would be one that's built with fuel savings in mind just like the bus as a whole so lighter parts would result in poorer quality generally speaking


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