‘AMA in Real Time’ system proposal clears House panel

By John McPhaul

The Transportation, Infrastructure and Public Works Committee in the Puerto Rico House of Representatives, chaired by Rep. José Aníbal Díaz Collazo, approved on Tuesday the report of House Bill 797, without amendments, which seeks to create the “AMA in Real Time” program to establish transportation schedules in estimated time through a global positioning system, so that citizens know the arrival times of buses.

Likewise, the program seeks to establish specific schedules for transportation by an application or by means of digital signs placed at stops where possible.

The legislative measure highlights that for years, the public transportation system in Puerto Rico has lacked evidence of the time when buses arrive at passenger stops.

The lack of a system that provides accuracy so that passengers can know when the next transport is about to arrive, has had the result of fewer and fewer people being willing to wait without having a notion of when their transport will arrive.

“In countries where public transportation has been classified as highly efficient, the states have developed the necessary infrastructure in their public transport stations to inform citizens of the approximate waiting time they must wait at the stop,” reads the bill.

Similarly, this legislation highlights that for years, the number of passengers has been reduced precisely due to the lack of security for citizens at the time the transport arrives at the stop. Therefore, an electronic device at the stops, as allowed by the infrastructure, using a Global Positioning System, to provide reliability to citizens and would encourage the use of public transportation on the island, the proposal contends. The electronic system would be a sign that would indicate to the citizen the real time of how long the transport would take to arrive.

In a final vote, the report of House Bill 797 was approved by the committee with eight votes in favor and will soon go to the full chamber.

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