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Greyhound Lines

Greyhound Lines
Greyhound Lines

Greyhound Lines, Inc. is an intercity common carrier of passengers by bus serving over 3,700 destinations in the United States. It was founded in Hibbing, Minnesota, USA, in 1914 and incorporated as "Greyhound Corporation" in 1929. Today, it is headquartered at 350 North St. Paul Street in Downtown Dallas, Texas,[1] and under the ownership of Scottish transport firm FirstGroup, which operates Greyhound as an independent subsidiary.

Early years
Carl Wickman was born in Sweden in 1887. He moved to the United States, and in 1914 began a bus service in Minnesota where he transported iron ore miners from Hibbing to Alice at 15 cents a ride in a 1914 Hupmobile.[2] In 1915, Wickman joined forces with Ralph Bogan, who was running a similar service from Hibbing to Duluth. The name of the new organization was the Mesaba Transportation Company, and it made $8,000 in profit in its first year. By the end of World War I Wickman owned 18 buses, and was making an annual profit of $40,000. In 1922, Wickman joined forces with Orville Caesar, the owner of the Superior White Bus Lines. Four years later, Wickman reached an agreement with two West Coast operations, the Pickwick Lines and the Pioneer Yelloway System. In 1926, Wickman’s bus operations became known as the Greyhound Lines. Ed Stone, who set up a new addition from Superior, WI to Wausau, WI, - during his inaugural run, passing through a small northern WI town saw the reflection of the 20’s era bus in a store window - it reminded him of a greyhound dog and he renamed that segment of the "Bluegoose Lines", as the Wickman lines were known - later the entire system became Greyhound. Mr. Stone later became General Sales Manager of GM’s Yellow Truck and Coach division, which built Greyhound buses. (At the Greyhound Bus Museum in Hibbing,

Greyhound Lines #86004, in the new 2009 livery, arrives in New York City. Slogan Greyhound: The New Greyhound. We’re On Our Way. BoltBus: Bolt For a Buck. NeOn: Go Canada. Go NY. Go in Style. FirstGroup 1914 by Carl Wickman Dallas, Texas United States Canada Intercity coach service 130 regular routes 3 BoltBus routes 1 NeOn route 3,700+ 2,400+ MCI MC-12, 102D(L)3, G4500 Prevost X3-45, Van Hool C2045L David Leach Greyhound Lines

Parent company Founded Headquarters Service area Service type Routes

Destinations Stations Fleet

Chief executive Web site


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MN, a plaque displays this information.) Wickman, who was president of the company, continued to expand it, and by 1927 his buses were making transcontinental trips from California to New York. Wickman’s business suffered during the Great Depression, and by 1931 was over $1 million in debt. However, with the improvement in the economy, the Greyhound Corporation began to prosper again. In 1935, Wickman was able to announce record profits of $8 million. By the outbreak of World War II the company had 4,750 stations and nearly 10,000 employees. Wickman retired as president of Greyhound Corporation in 1946, and was replaced by his long-time partner, Orville Caesar. Carl Wickman died at the age of sixty-seven in 1954.

Greyhound Lines
After World War II, and the building of the Interstate Highway System beginning in 1956, automobile ownership and travel became a preferred mode of travel in the United States. Along with a similar downward trend in public transportation in general, ridership on Greyhound and Trailways bus routes began a long decline. For many young people from Europe, Greyhound was the way they got to know America because of a special unlimited mileage offer: "99 days for $99" or, in other words, a dollar a day, anytime, anyplace, and anywhere. However, young African-Americans faced segregated buses and facilities in the South, as well as intolerant bus drivers. Prior to the Civil Rights reforms of the sixties, black passengers were often forced to give up their seats to white riders and stand by until a seat became available in the back of the bus. In 1961, Freedom Riders boarded Greyhound and Trailways buses to test courtordered desegregation of buses, trains and planes, because previous Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) rulings and Presidential mandates to integrate interstate travel had been largely ignored by southern carriers. Black and white integration activists faced persecution and violence, and buses which attempted to conform to the new rulings were, in some cases, burned by pro-segregationist mobs. In 2001, a 40th year Freedom Riders’ Reunion [1] was held. The Freedom Rides were inspired by the 1947 Journey of Reconciliation led by civil rights gay activist Bayard Rustin. As a result of his actions, Rustin was arrested and sentenced to labor on a North Carolina chain gang for violating the local Jim Crow laws.[3] Greyhound leadership saw the trend, and began significant changes including using the profitable bus operations to invest in other industries. By the 1970s, Greyhound had moved its headquarters to Phoenix, Arizona, and was a large and diversified company, with holdings in everything from the Armour meat-packing company (which in turn owned the popular Dial deodorant soap brand), acquired in 1970; Traveller’s Express money orders, MCI bus manufacturing company, and even airliner leasing. Indeed, Greyhound had entered a time of great change, even beginning to hire African American and female drivers in the late seventies.[4] Greyhound established the Premier Cruise Line in 1983. It would last until 2000, and at

Postwar expansion and diversification

A Greyhound bus in the 1950s livery.

Ready for boarding in Salem, Oregon for a fast trip north on new Interstate 5 in Autumn 1965.


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one time billed itself as the "Official Cruise Line of Walt Disney World". In late 1984, Greyhound had a major driver’s strike, typified as bitter, with one fatality in Zanesville, Ohio. By the time contract negotiations were due again, three years later, the bus line had been spun-off from the parent company to new owners. This resulted in Greyhound Lines becoming solely a bus transportation company headed by Fred Currey, a former executive with the largest member of the National Trailways Bus System. Greyhound’s corporate headquarters then relocated to Dallas, Texas. The old parent changed its name to the Dial Corporation.

Greyhound Lines
Under new ownership in 1987, led by Currey, Greyhound Lines acquired Trailways, Inc. in June of that year (formerly Continental Trailways), the largest member of the rival National Trailways Bus System, effectively consolidating National Bus Service. Greyhound was required by the ICC in their action approving the merger, to maintain coordinated schedules with other scheduled service operators in the U.S. Three years later there was another costly strike beginning in March 1990. It was during that strike, combined with the loss of diversification and strength of the former parent company, and labor-law violations, that caused Greyhound to file for bankruptcy in June 1990. This strike was as bitter as the strike of the 1980s with violence against both strikers and their replacement workers, with one striker in California killed by a Greyhound bus hired by a strikebreaker.[5] At the same time, Greyhound had to contend with the rise of low-cost airlines like Southwest Airlines, which reduced further the market for long-distance inter-city bus transportation. The strike would not be settled for 38 months, under terms favorable to Greyhound, as while the National Labor Relations Board had awarded damages for unfair labor practices to the strikers, this liability was discharged during bankruptcy reorganization.[5][6] In 1997, Greyhound Lines acquired Carolina Trailways, one of the largest members of the National Trailways Bus System. Following the acquisition, most of the other independent members of the Trailways System began interlining cooperatively with Greyhound, discontinued their regular route services, diversified into charters and tours or went out of business.

Spin-off from Dial Corporation

Greyhound MCI MC-12 Americruiser #2119 in Indiana, summer 2003.

Laidlaw ownership and reorganization of the route network
In 1999, Burlington, Ontario-based transportation conglomerate Laidlaw Inc. acquired Greyhound Lines, Inc. (U.S. operations) including Carolina Trailways and other Greyhound affiliates. It had previously acquired Greyhound Canada. After incurring heavy losses through its investments in Greyhound Lines and other parts of its diversified business, Laidlaw Inc. filed for protection under both U.S. and Canadian Bankruptcy laws in June 2001 .

Greyhound station in Columbia, South Carolina, built in 1938-1939 and shot here in November 1986. Greyhound stopped using it the next year.


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Greyhound Lines
Greyhound began a program in select markets, most notably in the northeastern United States, where riders could reserve a seat for an additional $5. However, the $5 fee would have to be paid at the terminal, even if the ticket was bought online, and only a limited number of seats could be reserved.[14] Also under First ownership, Greyhound has sought to improve its image, spending $60 million to refurbish many terminals, add new buses, and staff terminals with associates who are able to help those who have questions about the bus system. Greyhound is initiating an advertising campaign aimed at attracting 18-24 year olds and Hispanics.[15] As a result, after the FirstGroup acquisition, Greyhound began advertising as "The New Greyhound". The "New Greyhound" also saw the introduction of a new livery with a navy blue and dark gray base (such as #86004 at the top of the article), with no white in the livery. In addition, the service is now marketed as Greyhound, Brought to You by First.

A Greyhound bus in the early 2000s livery. Naperville, Illinois-based Laidlaw International, Inc. listed its common shares on the New York Stock Exchange (Ticker: LI), on February 10, 2003, and emerged from re-organization on June 23, 2003, as the successor to Laidlaw Inc. In the wake of this bankruptcy filing, Greyhound would exit a number of areas, particularly rural areas, turning routes in those areas over to local operators (often with government subsidies), particularly in the Plains states[7], parts of the upper Midwest such as Wisconsin, and the Pacific Northwest. [8] During these route changes in 2004 and 2005, a number of routes were eliminated altogether, most notably the Interstate 90 route between Chicago and Seattle.[9][10]

Partnership and competition
Greyhound’s scheduled services compete with the private automobile, low-cost airlines and other intercity coach companies. Greyhound is one of the major operators of Amtrak’s Thruway Motorcoach service even though the two are competitors in some markets. The service compensates for lost intercity rail service in many instances and provides access to locations away from Amtrak’s rail lines. In some cases the added convenience of through-ticketing is available for connecting passengers.

FirstGroup ownership
On February 7, 2007, FirstGroup plc of Scotland, agreed to purchase Laidlaw International for US$3.6 billion (£1.9 billion). The deal closed on September 30, 2007.[11] The Greyhound name has been retained by FirstGroup; the brands of its subsidiaries, however, are not being retained and will disappear as buses are retired.[12] Under the ownership of FirstGroup, other concerns have also been addressed. Greyhound had come under criticism for its bus assignment practices. Although bus tickets have times and dates printed on them, seating is not guaranteed, and is first-come, firstserved. Greyhound will add additional "sections" (buses) in periods of high demand, but the threshold required to trigger an additional section varies. Passengers may have to wait for the next bus departure time.[13] Shortly after the sale to FirstGroup closed,

Discount services
Since the purchase of Greyhound Lines by FirstGroup, Greyhound has initiated two discount bus services, both radiating from New York City and servicing major cities in the northeastern United States, both of which began operations in 2008 and are operated in conjunction with other traditional operators. These services are designed to compete with Chinatown bus carriers, and more directly with Megabus. Both services offer Wi-Fi and outlets into which equipment can be plugged at every seat. Each service is offered in conjunction with another local bus carrier.


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Greyhound Lines
above, offered in conjunction with Trailways of New York) competes directly with Coach USA’s own discount express bus service, Megabus.

NeOn branding

On May 29, 2008, a service based on the Megabus model used in the United Kingdom and United States (and also used in the BoltBus service) was initiated to and from Toronto in association with Trailways of New York, operating between street stops at Penn Station in Manhattan and the Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto. The service was designed to compete with Megabus’ M24/M26 line operating between New York and Toronto from nearby stops. Service was initially provided to Buffalo twice-daily, and to Syracuse once-daily via NeOn. Poor performance led Greyhound to make adjustments to the service until the NeOn name became purely superficial. The daytime NeOn bus now makes stops in Batavia, Rochester and Binghamton and no longer terminates at curbside locations. The service now uses the regular bus terminal in Toronto, located at Bay Street and Dundas Avenue West. This service is a joint operation between sister companies Greyhound Lines and Greyhound Canada, and Trailways of New York, the major inter-city bus carrier within most of New York State.

Notable incidents and accidents
This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it. Below is a list of major incidents and accidents on Greyhound buses and buses of subsidiaries in the United States. • August 4, 1952: In Greyhound’s deadliest accident, two Greyhound buses collided head-on along the then-U.S. Route 81 near Waco, Texas. The fuel tanks of both buses then ruptured, bursting into flames. Of the 56 persons aboard both coaches, 28 were killed, including both drivers.[17][18] • August 28, 1965: A timber truck rammed head-on into a stopped Greyhound Scenicruiser near Vinton, Louisiana along US 90 while the truck was attempting to pass a car. Eleven people on the Greyhound bus died.[17] • May 13, 1972: In Bean Station, Tennessee, a Greyhound Scenicruiser hit a tractortrailer head on. Fifteen people on the bus were killed, including the driver. • May 9, 1980: A freight ship collided with the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, resulting in several vehicles including a Greyhound bus falling into Tampa Bay. All 26 people on the bus perished, along with nine others. This is the largest loss of life on a single Greyhound coach to date. • October 3, 2001: At approximately 4:15 a.m. local time, a passenger, Damir Igric attacked the driver of his bus, attempting to slit his throat, and causing the bus to crash near Manchester, Tennessee, killing Igric and five other passengers and injuring 32 others. As the incident occurred weeks after the September 11 terrorist attacks, Greyhound shut down its entire system as soon as the company learned of the incident for fear that it may have been part of a larger co-ordinated attack. After investigation by the company and the FBI, it was confirmed that Igric had acted alone, and service resumed later that afternoon.[19] After the incident, Greyhound bus stations increased

In March 2008, Greyhound announced a new service titled BoltBus into the Boston-NYC-DC megalopolis, modeled on the Megabus system in use at the time in Chicago metropolitan area and in the United Kingdom, offering fares as low as $1 USD, with lowest fares depending on how far in advance a trip is booked and demand for the trip, with fares increasing for trips booked closer to departure. On each trip, one seat is sold for $1, with prices increasing up to a maximum of $25 for a one way trip.[16] The service began on March 27, 2008, with a New York City-Washington, D.C. route, with service to Boston and Philadelphia following soon after. Offered in partnership with Peter Pan Bus Lines, it (along with NeOn described


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security, though not nearly to the same level as airports or train stations. September 30, 2002: Arturo Martinez Tapia attacked another Greyhound driver near Fresno, California, resulting in two passenger deaths after the bus then rolled off an embankment and crashed.[20] Following this attack, driver shields were installed on most Greyhound buses that now prevent passengers from directly touching the driver while the bus is in motion, even if the shield is forced open. On buses without the shield, the seats behind the driver are normally offlimits.[21] October 10, 2005 - A Greyhound bus on charter flips near Williams, California at approximately 6:12 p.m. local time, killing at least five and injuring at least 30.[22] November 27, 2005: At approximately 7:10 a.m. local time, a Greyhound bus traveling from Los Angeles to San Francisco crashed near Santa Maria, killing two people, one of whom was a 7-month-pregnant woman. While the cause remains unknown, at the time of the crash, driver fatigue was suspected.[23] Later, an epileptic seizure was cited as a possible cause.[24] August 28, 2006: At approximately 6:45 p.m. local time, a Greyhound bus traveling from New York City to Montreal overturned on the Adirondack Northway in Westport, New York after suffering a blown tire, killing five and injuring 48.[25] January 2, 2008: A Greyhound bus traveling from Richmond to Raleigh rearended a tractor trailer on U.S. Route 1 in Henderson, NC that had slowed to make a turn. At least 50 people were injured.[26] February 24, 2008 - A Greyhound coach with at least 50 passengers aboard crashed and rolled over in the early morning hours on the median of Interstate 380 near Scranton, Pennsylvania. Fortyone passengers were injured, two seriously.[27]

Greyhound Lines
identification checked. Greyhound says that metal detector wands have been deployed on buses, but they do not appear to be routinely used.[28] Greyhound announced in a press conference in 2007 that a pilot program to test various security measures would be implemented at select stations and on select coaches starting later in the year. Some of the stations included in this project, are in Boston, Cleveland, Dallas, and St. Louis. Measures may include: • Requiring photo ID to be displayed by all adult passengers prior to boarding. Minors, in accordance with Greyhound’s policy, must either have to be accompanied by a parent or a legal guardian, or to obtain permission to travel from one [29], and when unaccompanied, have restrictions on traveling. • In the United States, passengers who are not citizens will be screened to determine the legality of their presence within the country’s borders. Also, some may be checked for outstanding felony warrants, and boarding may be denied to those who fit into one of these categories. • Passengers may have their luggage visually searched. Devices similar to those used at airports may be used to check passengers and luggage prior to boarding buses for various banned items, including firearms, explosives, or other hazardous materials. • On all newer coaches, operators are shielded from passengers while the coach is in motion. A gate prevents passengers from entering the driver’s area. Though the gate does not prevent an emergency exit, it will continue to shield the driver if opened by a passenger while the coach is in motion. Shields were installed after two attacks on drivers in the early 2000s. In the absence of a driver shield, passengers are normally not permitted to occupy the seats behind the operator.[21] • Installing video surveillance on coaches and at stations. • Installing GPS tracking devices on select coaches. In addition to providing emergency location of the vehicle, this may also alert supervisors of unsafe driving behavior on part of the operator, including speeding. • Operators, at their own discretion, now reserve the right to prohibit or limit the







Increasingly, concern has been given to bus security. As a result of the September 11, 2001 attacks, train and airplane security have been substantially increased, but the same increase has not been provided to bus security. Baggage is not inspected, nor is


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use of cell phones while the coach is in motion. • Greyhound already prohibits taking photographs, videotaping, or audiotaping while on board its own coaches or within its owned stations.[30]

Greyhound Lines

• • • • • • • • • • Motor Coach Industries 102D(W)3 Motor Coach Industries 102DL(W)3 Motor Coach Industries MC-12 Motor Coach Industries D4500 Motor Coach Industries D4505 (Cruceros only) Motor Coach Industries G4500 Prevost Car H3-45 (on lease) Prevost Car X3-45 (northeastern United States) Setra S217HDH (on lease) Van Hool C2045 (Michigan DOT and TMN&O only)

Nicknames of past coaches
• General Motors PD-4501-Scenicruiser • Motor Coach Industries MC 6-Supercruiser • Motor Coach Industries MC 7-Scenicruiser Super 7 • Motor Coach Industries MC 8-Americruiser • Motor Coach Industries MC 9-Americruiser II (aka Crusader II) Later models such as the A series and the MC-12 bore only the Americruiser name. MCI D and G series, Prevost, and Van Hool coaches coaches do not carry nicknames.

[1] "Route Map." Greyhound Lines. Retrieved on May 4, 2009. [2] Greyhound Bus Museum [3] Jackson, Carlton. Hounds of the Road: a history of the Greyhound Bus Company. Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green University Popular Press, 1984. [4] Jackson, Carlton. Hounds of the Road: a history of the Greyhound Bus Company. Bowling Green, Ohio: Bowling Green University Popular Press, 1984. [5] ^ The Great Greyhound Strikes, accessed 2008-11-22

[6] Greyhound Bus Drivers End 3-Year Strike With New Pact, New York Times, 1993-05-09, accessed 2008-11-22 [7] USA Today - Some left in lurch as Greyhound cuts stops, July 19, 2004, accessed 2008-11-22 [8] =" fullpage.html?res=9F07E0DB1E31F935A3575AC0A9 New York Times - As Greyhound Cuts Back, The Middle of Nowhere Means Going Nowhere], 2004-09-06, accessed 2008-11-22 [9] The Greyhound doesn’t stop here anymore, Mike Bucsko and Cindi Lash, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, November 13, 2005 [10] Doghouse On Wheels, Emily Lambert,, January 31, 2005 [11] Laidlaw International Announces Agreement to Be Acquired by FirstGroup, SEC filing [12] FirstGroup intro page regarding acquisition [13] | Sarah Overstreet [14] Reserve seat on Greyhound for $5 Yahoo! News [15] "Greyhound Gets A Makeover". CBS News (CBS Corporation). 2007-11-12. 11/12/business/main3488817.shtml. Retrieved on 2007-11-12. [16] "Beating $4 Gas with a $1 Bus". Time, Inc.. 2008-06-06. time/business/article/ 0,8599,1812012,00.html?imw=Y. Retrieved on 2008-06-08. [17] ^ Hounds of the Road, by Carlton Jackson, accessed November 2, 2008 [18] My Turn: He’s still walking tall, and grateful to be alive, by Allen Richards from the Daily Breeze, Oct. 21, 2008, accessed Nov. 2, 2008 [19] FBI say bus attack wasn’t terrorism,, October 4, 2001; date accessed: July 9, 2007 [20] Knife attack on California bus, October 1, 2002, date accessed: May 28, 2008 [21] ^ [ News70.asp Greyhound faces lawsuits over ’01 wreck Passengers say line kept quiet about attacks on drivers], from the Atlanta Journal Constitution, accessed May 28, 2008 [22] Five dead, many injured in Colusa County bus crash, accessed 2008-10-06


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[23] Police: Driver fatigue likely factor in fatal bus crash,, November 28, 2005; date accessed July 9, 2007 [24] Lawsuit settled in bus crash, Samantha Yale, Santa Maria Times, March 17, 2007; date accessed: July 9, 2007 [25] Les survivants terrifiés par l’expérience LCN - Faits divers [26] 50 Injured In Bus, Tractor-Trailer Crash Winston-Salem News Story - WXII Winston-Salem [27] Passenger bus flips near Scranton [28]’s Printer-Friendly Page [29] : Travel Information : Children Traveling [30] : Travel Information : Traveling by Bus

Greyhound Lines
• Atlantic Greyhound Lines • Tennessee Coach Company -- an independent carrier which cooperated with Atlantic GL and Southeastern GL (1928-56) • Greyhound Bus Museum • Peter Pan Bus Lines – interline partner in the northeastern United States • Trailways Transportation System • Greyhound Air – Defunct low-cost airline in Canada • Greyhound Australia • Greyhound Canada – related carrier • First Avenue, a nightclub that currently operates out of a former Greyhound Bus Terminal in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

See also
• • • • • Southeastern Greyhound Lines Dixie Greyhound Lines Teche Greyhound Lines Greyhound Mexico Florida Greyhound Lines

External links
• • • • • Greyhound Greyhound Greyhound Greyhound Greyhound Lines home page lines, non-flash homepage Canada Mexico Lines timetable

Retrieved from "" Categories: Intercity bus companies of the United States, Companies based in Dallas, Texas, First Group companies, Companies established in 1914 This page was last modified on 18 May 2009, at 02:14 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers


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