ShuttleID launches free BODS app
ShuttleID, the ticketing platform for schools and work, has released a free app to help operators comply with Bus Open Data Service (BODS) regulations. The new driver app submits vehicle location data to the Bus Open Data Service and is now freely available as part of the company’s ticketing packages.
The app works by a driver selecting their service and vehicle on the app, and starting the journey. While in journey mode, the app automatically submits vehicle location data every 15 seconds, using the device’s GPS sensor and 4G network connection.
The cloud-based platform handles the rest; matching the journey to published timetables (TransXChange), combining the timetable data with vehicle location data, converting this raw data into a SIRI-VM format and then sending it to the Bus Open Data Service.
With this secondary integration into BODS via an app, ShuttleID says it is the only supplier to offer multiple integrations without the need for an electronic ticketing machine (ETM). It believes this puts it in a strong position to help any operator that does not have a hard requirement for an expensive, fixed ticket machine on their vehicle. In particular, it says this could be of interest to any home-to-school services that now needs to comply with the regulation.
ShuttleID’s original integration, released in January 2021, offered operators what it described as the first alternative for compliance with regulations, outside of a modern ETM. Instead, the BODS package was powered by low-cost vehicle tracking devices in partnership with vehicle tracking company Pinpointers. Both integrations, either via the app or dedicated tracking device, are now available to operators under its Bus Open Data package.
“Nearly two years on since Bus Open Data became a legal requirement, we are hearing a recent surge in cases where DVSA are cracking down on non-compliant operators” – ShuttleID director, Chris Bell
ShuttleID director, Chris Bell, said: “We launched the Bus Open Data package in 2021 specifically with home-to-school service operators in mind. The unexpected news that school services would need to comply with the regulations caught many off guard. At the time the only option available to comply was expensive, fixed ticket machines which were unnecessary in many cases. Our original integration, which instead used low-cost tracking devices, was innovative and a relief to many operators.
“Earlier this year we released our LIVE add-on for our ticketing system, powered by a 4G connected driver app. Adding support for BODS to our driver app was the next logical step. Nearly two years on since Bus Open Data became a legal requirement, we are hearing a recent surge in cases where DVSA are cracking down on non-compliant operators. Thankfully, we now have multiple options to tailor fit operators, all of which are simple, low-cost and fast to set up.”
“I think many operators had hoped this would be revisited and even repealed, but we’re nearly two years on and there are still no signs of a change” – Mat Catterall, Director of Catteralls Coaches
Catteralls Coaches was one of the first operators to use the new driver app to comply with BODS regulations.
Mat Catterall, Director of Catteralls Coaches, said: “It felt like there has been uncertainty around the regulation with respect to closed door school services. I think many operators had hoped this would be revisited and even repealed, but we’re nearly two years on and there are still no signs of a change.
“ShuttleID has been quick and easy to use. The driver app itself is simple to start using. Along with our need to comply with Bus Open Data, it made sense to revisit how we handled our school bus passes and payments. The savings we are now seeing from the admin of the passes has made it worth the change of system.”
ShuttleID will be exhibiting its system at the Euro Bus Expo 2022 on 1-3 November on stand A48.