Due to identified safety concerns, last April 2014 BBB and many other transit agencies eliminated seating on buses with forward facing seats. We do understand the inconvenience as more customers have had to stand on crowded trips. Thank you for your patience over the past year as we proactively sought a solution.
We are very pleased to announce that a fix is underway. Early in 2015 the Santa Monica City Council approved BBB's proposal to modify the seating area to make the area safer for customers. Barriers will be installed over the next three months on all BBB buses, making two more seats available for your use. Modifications will likely be completed by mid-summer.
Should you have further inquiries about the seating, below are some answers to your questions that may provide further clarification on this issue.
Q: How long is this modification expected to take?
BBB is beginning the modifications in early May and expects to have the front seating on all buses modified by mid-summer 2015. When the modifications are complete, two more seats will be available for customer use.
Q: Why were the forward facing flip-up seats made unavailable?
The bus manufacturer asked all transit agencies, including Santa Monica, to disable these seats. This new design modification is being taken as a preventative safety measure for all our customers.
Q: Will this affect wheelchair access?
No. Disabling the front-facing flip-up seats does not affect wheelchair access and the modification will still allow for access.