Commuters panic when they are told the next London bus will arrive in 6,866,145 minutes

Sometimes it can feel like an eternity waiting for a London bus where the digital viewing time seems to be ticking down at a snail’s pace. This is doubly true if you arrive a little late for work.

A Londoner has admitted that they may have to go to their destination after the bus stop they were waiting at showed that the next bus would not have to wait another 13 years. The bus passenger was confused when the bus’s digital timetable showed that the next double-decker would be in 6,866,145 minutes.

A picture of the error was sent to r / London, prompting locals to have a field day while people searched for an explanation. Theories were turned around, including everything from one from TfL who accidentally leaned on the keyboard while eating a sandwich, to Peckham, Clapham and Tooting were in another dimension.

READ MORE: ‘I traveled on the only route outside London with Boris buses and it almost changed my mind about bus connections’

The bus stop in Battersea was also scrutinized by more mathematical types, which offered more, shall we say, practical solutions.

One Redditor wrote: “These are two values, is my guess. 68661 is one value and 40 is another value. I think the minute section will be limited to 8bit as it will never exceed 59.

“68661 is larger than a short unsigned integer (16bit) in C ++, so I do not know its meaning.”

Want to stay up to date with the latest news, views, features and opinions from across the city?

MyLondon’s brilliant newsletter The 12 is completely crammed with all the latest to keep you entertained, informed and uplifted.

You get 12 stories directly in your inbox around noon. It’s the perfect lunch read.

And what’s more – it’s FREE!

The MyLondon team tells London stories to Londoners. Our journalists cover all the news you need – from the town hall to your local streets, so you never miss a moment.

Do not skip a beat and sign up for The 12 Newsletter here.

Another added: “A 16 bit short circuit can give you a maximum value of 65,535, which is in the right range.

“I wonder if they calculate the time by adding / subtracting two short 16 bit numbers together into a long integer, and one is multiplied so that they link it to another variable?”

Their nerdy exchange was quickly interrupted when a third Redditor pointed out: “You guys! It’s sunshine outside …”

Whatever the reason behind the timetable crushing, it certainly puts into perspective the idea that even though it sometimes feels like it takes an eternity for a bus to arrive, the waiting times can be much worse.

Want stories sent straight to your inbox? Customize your messages here.

Do you have a story you think we should cover? Email


Leave a Comment