A marquee sign at Muni bus stop on Mission Street is seen registering information, preventing riders from knowing the latest scheduled bus times. (Jessica Christian/2017 S.F. Examiner)

‘NextMuni’ bus prediction service resolved after another outage

Muni’s prediction system NextMuni was on the fritz Monday, leaving passengers without a clue as to when their next bus was coming.

Those issues were resolved by about noon Tuesday, said San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Director of Transportation Ed Reiskin.

In his director’s report, made to the SFMTA Board of Directors at its regular public meeting Tuesday, Resikin said the problem came as a surprise.

“We don’t have any information” on why it happened, Reiskin told the board. “But we wanted to acknowledge what happened.”

SEE RELATED: Inside the Muni NextBus meltdown: Emails reveal what could have averted crisis

Reiskin said the agency is committed to “learning any lessons” needed from the outage, when a cause is discovered.

With 700,000 daily passenger boardings, much of San Francisco’s transit ridership depends on NextMuni to see when their next bus or light-rail vehicle is arriving, through cellphone apps and digital signage at bus stops.

But this is far from the first time the service has encountered an outage. In early 2017, for instance, the service was blacked out for two weeks, which the SFMTA attributed to AT&T changing over from 2Gto 3G cell phone networks earlier than anticipated, which disrupted wireless communications to Muni vehicles.

Reiskin reminded the board that “we will soon” be issuing a request for proposals from various companies to determine who will provide Muni’s “next generation” NextMuni service.

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