A safer way to travel

Bus Queensland, in partnership with TransLink and the state government, has employed eight customer service officers (CSO) to ride on Westside Buses and Park Ridge Transit and monitor their associated network in Ipswich and Logan.

CSO Samantha Lane said that since starting work as one of the new CSO's in Ipswich she has found the experience to be truly rewarding.

"We graduated on the 23 January - that was when we had finished a six week training course," she said.

"We had to do self defence training, first aid training, sit exams where we needed to make sure we did well on during the six weeks.

"It has been a great experience so far and I've met so many new amazing people as well."

The role of the CSO's is to protect revenue, by checking tickets, and providing good customer service on the buses and at interchanges.

CSOs also have the power to issue Warning Notices, Penalty Infringement Notices and direct persons to leave buses and Public Transport Infrastructure, however Bus Queensland has CSO's are in the job to help people not hunt them.

"Every single day is different, and you don't know what your interactions will be like but you always hope for a good interaction all the time" Miss Lane said.

"We also do automated ticketing education so now that buses have gone cashless, we help and educate people on getting go cards."

Miss Lane said although the job was rewarding and something she enjoyed it did present it's challenges.

"We've had some kids with knives before and babies walking on roads with no adults in sight, but we really do focus on the positives and that keeps us going."

As part of the effort to curb the spread of coronavirus, CSO's also make sure buses are clean, by making sure hand rails and platforms are regularly sanitised.

"We're proactive customer service officers and our primary role is to protect the safety and security of our bus drivers and our passengers by providing good customer service," Miss Lane said.