This article first appeared in the Bus-News magazine, Issue 2 2022.
Many transit fleet operators are either investigating or already working towards modernising their fleets to improve efficiency, safety, predictability and passenger experience or to address climate change concerns… but the pace of change is governed by available funding and many transit agencies, who are operating financially in the red, have consequently been limited in what they can accomplish.
However, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) in the US is a game changer and, along with other funding initiatives globally aiming to restore flagging transit ridership, is providing a huge infusion of capital to invest in electric buses and infrastructure upgrades for transit agencies to jump start their modernisation initiatives.
However, more must be done to define critical needs and appropriate solutions. One need is common across all transit agencies – an insatiable need for data (most in real time, some aggregated) in a secure manner to optimise operations and build a culture of on-time performance that benefits the entire ecosystem.
And the critical element in securing and reliably delivering data that is often overlooked is the network connectivity and operational visibility to the many systems on the vehicle, at the station and in the yard. Cisco recognises this and provides best-in-class secure network connectivity via industrial routers like the IR1800 series, switches like the IE32/33/3400, and access points like the IW9167, along with layered security solutions like ISE, CyberVision, and Umbrella.
Additionally, with a targeted management tool for deployment, monitoring and overseeing maintenance activities, the Cisco IoT Operations Dashboard monitors transit systems and provides needed visibility for critical business applications and operations.
But first, let’s look at the big picture.
Efficiency. Passenger experience. Safety. These are some of the keys to operating a successful transit fleet.
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