Eye On CARTA - And Response

Friday, February 1, 2013

I've had many close-calls with CARTA buses for years. When lodging a complaint that the same bus ran three consecutive red lights, the CARTA dispatcher's consistent response was, "Well, have you ever tried to stop a bus in a dime?"

As a matter of fact, I have. I've driven Greyhound Charter buses. And unlike CARTA drivers who drive 14 ton vehicles as if their were sports cars, I do not assume the attitude of "I'm bigger, he'll move." 

CARTA bus drivers aren't even supposed to have a cell phones with them on the job, but I filed a complaint against a specific downtown full-size bus because she was double-parked blocking most of Market Street (instead of in-line behind the bus already at that curb) and when I passed the driver, she was oblivious to anything except her furious texting. This same bus a block down the road pulled up behind me at a red light. The operator was still maniacally texting.

You cops see it every day and let it go because it's another arm of the Chattanooga government and the Po-Po would prefer to avoid interdepartmental scuffles.

I suggest a moratorium on CARTA buses. Their drivers are apathetic to their responsibilities and passengers. Their complaint department is (for the past two years) either impotent or couldn't care less. When I mentioned other infractions CARTA employees have incurred, the pat answer from their complaint department was "That person doesn't work here anymore." I'm not gullible. Are you? 

Public transportation in Chattanooga is attempting to grow numbers. CARTA will not be successful while your bus drivers run red lights, change lanes on-a-whim without signaling, double park in the middle of busy arteries at anytime, including rush hour and dishing out parking tickets. Today, from 2-2:30, I saw five separate incidents of CARTA Buses running red lights at Market and MLK, Broad and MLK, 4th Street and Market. I think the assurances I received at CARTA Corporate this afternoon to be little more that lip service only to rapidly dissipate like a gaseous emanation in the wind. My rationale for lodging a complaint against that bus is because CARTA never, ever does anything about any complaint.

Attention Chattanooga government and CARTA officials:  I will be carrying a video camera on my person at all times when away from my residence. When I witness a CARTA, SEPTA or any other form of CARTA service disregarding the law, texting or talking on a cell phone, eating or having a polite conversation with passengers, it will all be recorded and will all be considered distracted driving.  A weekly compilation of these videos will be presented to the chief of police of greater Chattanooga with copies sent to WRCB, WTVC, WDSI, WDEF and others. Boy will they have a field day. Oh, and since the drivers are public employees, video taping them in the performance (or lack thereof) of their job has just been ruled completely legal.

 Attention all CARTA passenger: Until all CARTA bus drivers have received remedial instruction on the rules of the city and the road, I believe it is unsafe and unwise to avail yourself of any CARTA service. Until their management "gives a darn" this is a bus company actively seeking a major accident. Are you going to be in that bus?

David D. Fihn, Sr.


* * * 

After moving back to Chattanooga over 30 years ago, I sometimes found myself needing the use CARTA public transportation services when I was without my own transportation. In my own transportation,  I've also driven behind and beside CARTA. I can honestly say I've never witnessed what Mr. Fihn, Sr. just described. It sounds more like he's hallucinating or something. 

For quite sometime now, I've noticed a certain "group" operating behind the scenes that seems to have formed here in the city, promoting themselves as activists operating for the good of the people. But they really come across as a hate group. Whose agenda is much darker than simple mean spirited. Their acts and deeds appear base, ugly and down right evil. Are you a part of that group, Mr. Fihn? 

Brenda Washington

Why Are We Allowing Poor Architecture And Urban Design Downtown?

   Over the past four decades our fair city has enjoyed striking improvements to our City Center and Northshore areas in large part due to citizen input and the guidance of the former Urban Design Studio. We are now widely recognized as a hotbed of entrepreneurship, neighborhood revitalization and good Urban Design. At the most recent City Council meeting, the leader and ... (click for more)

City Fathers Need To Formally Recognize The Late Bob Elmore - And Response (3)

Our city fathers have a long overdue opportunity to correct an oversight.  If the late Bob Elmore had been an elected official or a man of great wealth, with his contributions to Chattanooga, there would be buildings, bridges, or streets named in his honor.  Please read just some of Mr. Elmore’s accomplishments and see for yourself that some formal recognition should be ... (click for more)

Larry Schumacher Named Chief Executive Officer Of CHI Memorial

The board of directors of CHI Memorial and Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI) have chosen Larry Schumacher as the chief executive officer (CEO) of CHI Memorial effective Jan. 4, 2016 . Mr. Schumacher comes to CHI Memorial from Hospital Sisters Health System (HSHS) based in Springfield, Illinois where he served as system chief operating officer for the past eight years.  ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Under Flood Watch Through Wednesday

With a steady rain set to continue through Wednesday, Chattanooga is under a flood watch. Over four inches of rain are expected in some areas. Here is the advisory from the National Weather Service: ...LOCALIZED FLOODING POSSIBLE ACROSS EAST TENNESSEE AND SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA THROUGH WEDNESDAY MORNING... .THE COMBINATION OF DEEP SUBTROPICAL MOISTURE AND A SLOW MOVING FRONTAL ... (click for more)

No 1 Connecticut Overwhelms Lady Mocs, 79-31

At least 6,104 basketball enthusiasts got to see what the best women’s college basketball team in the country looks like Monday night at McKenzie Arena. The three-time defending national champion Connecticut Huskies won for the fourth time this season and 41 st game in a row with an impressive 79-31 victory over the Chattanooga Lady Mocs before the seventh-largest crowd in ... (click for more)

Mocs Fall 64-54 At ULM

The Chattanooga Mocs (5-2) five-game-in-10-day road show ended Monday night with a 64-54 loss at ULM (3-2). The squad shot a season-low 35.3 percent (18-51) in the loss. "I felt like we had good shots, especially in the first half,” coach Matt McCall said. “We were getting down the lane and guys were just flat out missing layups. Everyone for the most part was getting in the ... (click for more)