CTA redoubles efforts to clean buses

The CTA recently developed “more stringent criteria” for bus cleaning, resulting in more frequent “deep cleanings,” according to the Going Public column in the Tribune.

The accompanying Tribune video gives a great snapshot at how the cleanings are done.

Since the Going Public column is protected behind a pay wall, here’s some detail from the report:

Each bus servicer must clean about 26 buses per night for the daily maintenance, which includes sweeping bus floors, wiping down seats and handrails, and performing other duties, Cavelle said. The average time per bus is 18 minutes for a standard 40-foot bus and 20 minutes for a 60-foot bus with an articulated midsection.

Meanwhile, four hours are allotted to a single servicer to complete the in-depth floor-to-ceiling general cleaning of a 40-foot bus and six hours for a 60-foot bus, officials said.

Before the new rules, 2 1/2 hours was spent on each bus, Cavelle said. “It wasn’t anything in depth,” he said.

CTA supervisors fill out an 11-point score card for each bus. Regarding the interior, categories include graffiti and chewing gum as well as the bus operator’s area, passenger seats, windows and panels.

A bus servicer may scrape off more than 100 pieces of gum stuck under seats and hidden elsewhere, but if an inspection turns up three or more “traces of gum,” the servicer receives a zero score on the gum criterion, said Richard Feliciano, a CTA pump manager in charge of general cleaning at the Kedzie garage.

Feliciano said his duties go far beyond making sure his crews have the proper supplies. His focus is motivating them to “get their heads in the zone.”

Personally, I’ve been riding more buses lately, and I definitely have found buses to be much cleaner than train. So I would love to see standards for train cleanings also increased.


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  • 1. Here, unlike stuff like the decrowding statistics, there is actual inspection to see that the gum is gone, for instance.

    2. Swartz had portrayed this as that CTA was below the 85% standard; Hilekvitch as that CTA got it up from 45% to 82%.

    3. This article also shows what costs the pigs who ride CTA inflict on the others. It isn't just your category of "scary shit."

  • I agree with you about the general cleanliness of the buses Kevin. I've also been riding buses a lot more than I did in the past. Other than trips to and from O'Hare, I haven't been on a train in months.

  • Chewing gum should be banned on the buses and trains. You get caught with a piece of gum in your mouth, and we should get to shove your face into a giant bag of gum collected from the floors and seats.

  • Instead of redoubling their effort, it might be more efficient to quadruple their original effort.

  • In reply to eBob:


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