How AI is preventing the occurrence of three buses arriving simultaneously


UK bus operator First Bus is using artificial intelligence (AI) powered software to design and update its timetables in an effort to alleviate the problem of “bus bunching”. The company has 4,000 buses across the UK that operate for 16 hours a day, making it a challenge to keep them running on time. Before using AI, First Bus would only change timetables three times a year, but now with AI’s processing power and ability to learn, the company can make more frequent adjustments. The AI software has resulted in 20% more punctuality during peak periods and is being rolled out across all UK routes. However, some passengers have reported that bus services remain irregular. First Bus says that the new scheduling reduces stress for bus drivers and allows local governments to save money by optimising bus numbers. Transport watchdogs emphasise the importance of communicating changes effectively with passengers.

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