by Alan Watkins
Bus firm Arriva is facing fines after being hauled before traffic commissioners for unreliability.
The firm blamed the traffic situation in parts of Medway and said indiscriminate parking at Medway Maritime Hospital had been another problem.
It expects to hear the decision of traffic commissioner Philip Brown within four weeks.
Kevin Hawkins, commercial director of Arriva Southern Counties, said: “We have been running late. And it is unacceptable.”
The company has to be no more than one minute early or five minutes late on 19 out of every 20 journeys to satisfy the commissioner.
But inspectors checked six routes around Medway operated by Arriva earlier this year.
They found its buses were late on 13 per cent of all journeys.
At the traffic commissioners’ court in Eastbourne, Arriva staff produced evidence which showed there were two major problems that had affected their services at the time of the checks.
These were parking which disrupted traffic around Medway Maritime Hospital, and unlimited cars and lorries on the Sir John Hawkins flyover after they were reintroduced before its summer demolition.
Officials at Medway Maritime Hospital confirmed there had been “continual complaints” about parking within the site.
Arriva has also been found to be operating some of its journeys earlier than the published timetable.
Mr Hawkins said the company would be taking action to sort the problem.
The council is warning that there is likely to be further disruption to traffic flows in central Chatham as the infrastructure is updated during the recession.
Since the summer, the hospital has begun fining drivers who ignore parking signs. The fee is £60, reducing to £30 if paid within 14 days.
Don't miss out, subscribe today. Keep up to date with our newsletters.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating! PLUS, register for free!.
Find out what's going on in the garden, with Kent expert Lucy Hewett's weekly update.
Buy pictures that you've seen in a KM newspaper, or send in a picture and we will place it on our photo sales website so that you can purchase a super, unique gift.