EN 15140:2006 allows public transports operators to measure the quality of its service  

The flow of daily life in many European big cities would not be possible without efficient public transports, allowing all commuters to arrive on time to their destination while reducing (at least in part) traffic.

European Standards ensure that passengers have as much a pleasant experience as possible while commuting. This is the objective of EN 15140:2006 ‘Public passenger transport - Basic requirements and recommendations for systems that measure delivered service quality’: it sets out rules and requirements to ensure that the methodology underlying measurement systems of public passenger transports services to ensure that transport of passengers are stable and comparable.

To understand its usefulness, let us make a practical example: it could happen that you are late at work because your bus is late due to a technical failure or an accident. How is this delay measured by the transport company? The transport surveyors conduct measurements. To help them measure as consistently as possible, the standard recommends to provide them with clear guidance. Furthermore, the standard advises to carry out audits of the measurement system regularly and data collection and data processing system at least once a year.

A balance should be found between the precision of measurement and the costs, since measurements can be expensive (for instance, size of the samples or measurement of the number of passengers). One of the best methods of cost optimisation consists of performing several kinds of measurements at the same time, such as measuring information and cleanliness at the same time. The standard requires to balance the management and the customers’ viewpoint by ensuring that their perception is taken into account.

A measurement system managed and set up through the requirements set by EN 15140 will help ensure that trips on public transports are as comfortable as possible, and that metro, busses, trams are passing by on time.

EN 15140:2006 was developed by CEN/TC 320 ‘Transport - Logistics and services’, whose Secretariat is currently held by NEN, the Dutch National Standardization Body.

For more information, please contact Alina IATAN.

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