Cell Phones in Public Transportation – Why Rules Aren’t Enough

Public transit organizations face a difficult safety challenge: maintaining consistent performance across workgroups spread over thousands of miles, in different environments, and with limited or no supervisory oversight. The realities of the operation mean workers can go hours without performance monitoring or peer support. Moreover, the rules put into effect to prevent at-risk behavior are often ignored when workers are left in isolation.
This white paper explores why transportation employees continue to use cell phones despite known dangers and prohibitions against their use on the job, and offers transit leaders practical suggestions for addressing this issue in a more proactive way. We examine:
  • Best practices for changing behavior
  • The gap between consequences and rules
  • The ways that rules set expectations and raise awareness
  • Understanding the rule-behavior disconnect