In 2008 Boris Johnson pledged to "end the era of the bendy bus by scrapping them" and on Friday that promise was delivered, as the last bendy buses ran on London's roads. The very last one departed at five minutes past midnight.
As these "hulking great monsters" depart the capital's roads for good, BackBoris2012 presents a bendy bus fact file.
Bendy Bus Fact File
Introduced in June 2002 by the man who said, "Only some ghastly dehumanised moron would want to get rid of the Routemaster" and "I will save the Routemaster", just three years later the last Routemaster ran and bendy buses ruled the capital's roads.
Bendy buses were unsuitable for London's roads. Too often they were involved in dangerous accidents and it was too easy to avoid paying.
Did You Know?
Bendy buses have caught fire 8 times on London's streets:
- The entire 120-bus fleet was recalled in 2004 following a series of fires within weeks of each other. (Source)
- 3 buses were destroyed while in service and another burst into flames on its way to being delivered (Source)
- On 2 October 2007, a fire broke out on the No 25 in Ilford. (Source)
- On 29 August 2008 a bendy bus being used to train drivers at a firm that ferried construction workers to the site of the Olympic Stadium in Stratford spontaneously burst into flames, forcing transport bosses to investigate the vehicles yet again. (Source)
- On 4 September 2010 a No 73 bendy bus caught fire outside Victoria Station. (Source)
- On 29 June 2011 the southbound route 73 bus caught fire on the A10 in Stamford Hill. (Source)
In 45 years of service, the older Routemaster bus only caught fire 3 times. (Source)
When all bendy buses are off the road, around £7million per year is expected to be saved in fare evasion (Source)
Bendy buses were twice as likely to be involved in a collision. (Source)
The pedestrian collision rate of a bendy bus was double that of other buses, with 5.6 pedestrian injuries per million miles operated on bendy buses and 2.6 pedestrian injuries per million miles operated on other bus types in 2006/07. (Source)
The cyclist collision rate of a bendy bus was double that of other buses with 2.62 collisions with cyclists per million miles operated on bendy buses and only 0.97 collisions with cyclists per million miles operated on other bus routes in 2006/07. (Source)
In the first full year of bendy buses - April 2006 and April 2007 - there was a 45% rise in accidents involving the No 38 Victoria to Clapton bendy bus compared to the previous 12 months of double-decker service. (Source)
On the No 29 route from Wood Green to Trafalgar Square, 58 more accidents were recorded when bendy buses were used for their first full year. (Source)
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