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The trolleybus does not run on tracks and this
was once thought to be an advantage because the vehicle could
vary its route. In fact, routes which remain fixed for generations
are an incentive to reliance on public transport, routes which
change are perceived as unreliable.
Other factors which would make trolleybuses unsuitable for Bath include:
a) The public association of tram tracks with
reliability of service is lost.
b) The need to ensure a traffic-free corridor, which enables the vehicles to keep to time, is not as pressing and tends to be neglected.
c) The trolleybus has to be steered, this prevents the use of gap-free level boarding platforms for easy access, it also make it unsuitable for use in pedestrian areas.
d) The double overhead wiring of a trolleybus route requires a heavier and more obtrusive supporting structure than that of a tramway and four times as many fittings at a crossing point.
On many routes a single tram wire will serve both outgoing and returning vehicles whereas a trolleybus requires two separate pairs of wires on a two-way route, increasing the overhead wiring still further.
(View of tram and trolleybus wires in Dudley)
(View of trolleybus wires in Ghent)
(View of tram wires in Ghent for comparison)
e) The power losses in the double length of trolleybus wire would be excessive, the wire is usually made thicker than tram wire to compensate for this.
f) Because the power requirements of a rubber tyre on the road surface are six times greater than those of a steel wheel on a rail, trolleybuses waste more power than trams. In addition, the production and disposal of tyres is a burden on the environment..
website for trolleybuses
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