Developing Standard Times for Repair Activities for Transit Vehicles: A Systematic Approach

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

operations - scheduling, infrastructure - track, infrastructure - vehicle, planning - standards, organisation - management, mode - bus


Transit buses, Tracking systems (Management), Standards, Service time, Scheduling, Resource allocation, Repairing, Repair, Preventive maintenance, Maintenance time, Maintenance management, Florida, Decision making, Brakes


This paper presents a systematic method for determining repair time standards for transit vehicles. Most approaches typically used for time and motion study are designed mainly for manufacturing processes and thus find limited applications in transit environments. The methodology developed in this study is comprehensive and incorporates relevant factors such as maintenance procedures and work bay components and design, which are particular to the transit industry. This methodology has been employed on two systems: brake repair and preventive maintenance on buses. A major component of the methodology pertains to restructuring procedures, not only to improve work flow but also to normalize the operative assignments across transit shops. That focus facilitates productivity control and allows managers to assess training needs better. Outcomes reveal that the proposed methodology serves as a framework to develop valid standards that could have an impact on the efficiency of technicians while reducing total job completion time. Results are enhanced by the development of an information system that allows tracking of the time technicians take to complete the tasks and that represents, graphically, the performance rating based on the time standards developed. This tool assists supervisors during complex management decisions for resource allocation and scheduling. This project was initiated by the Florida Department of Transportation and the Center of Urban Transportation Research (CUTR). The research is part of the Florida Maintenance Training and Technical Assistance Program in CUTR and is guided by the committee of Transit Maintenance Consortium. The committee includes the managers and supervisors of the transit agencies throughout Florida.