Passenger Bus/Urban Transit Survey - Quarterly

Detailed information for fourth quarter 2000





Record number:


This discontinued survey collected financial and operating information on the Canadian passenger bus and urban transit industries.

Data release - October 4, 2001


This survey collects financial and operating information on the Canadian passenger bus and urban transit industries. It supplements data obtained from the annual surveys of the bus industry (record number 2798) by collecting financial and operating data on a quarterly basis. These data are part of the business statistics program of Statistics Canada that is used to produce national and provincial estimates of economic production such as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Aggregate data published from this survey are used: by government in the development of policy and programs and by bus companies, financial institutions, industry associations and others wishing to monitor the industry's performance.


  • Business performance and ownership
  • Financial statements and performance
  • Transportation
  • Transportation by road

Data sources and methodology

Target population

The target population consists of Canadian companies with annual gross operating revenues (excluding subsidies) of $200,000 or more operating urban transit system, inter-city, charter, school and employee transportation, and sightseeing and shuttle services. Bus services, such as school buses owned and operated by school boards and used for transporting school children, are not covered in this survey. Companies that specialize in the provision of services for handicapped people are also not included.

Instrument design

The following observations apply to the information collected by this survey: 1) Passengers paying a fare to the operator of a vehicle and travelling on a second or third vehicle on a transfer are counted for the first vehicle only; 2) Total distance run by vehicles should be the total run in revenue service. "Dead Head" distance is not counted.


This survey is a census with a cross-sectional design.

The unit of observation is the company as opposed to the statistical establishment or enterprise. The survey frame is derived from Statistics Canada Business Register supplemented with historical records of bus companies and urban transit providers.

Data sources

Responding to this survey is mandatory.

Data are collected directly from survey respondents.

Quarterly questionnaires are sent to all companies that the Business Register has with earnings of $200,000 or more annually for passenger bus and/or urban transit operations (excluding school bus operators with annual revenues lower than $2 million; they are are surveyed annually only).

View the Questionnaire(s) and reporting guide(s).

Error detection

The data from the passenger bus questionnaires are captured and checked for errors and inconsistencies which are followed-up with respondents. Missing data are imputed using electronic (Generalized Edit and Imputation System) and manual processes.


Missing data are estimated from previous quarter same year, same quarter previous year. A representative donor, or are derived from administrative data.


This methodology type does not apply to this statistical program.

Quality evaluation

Survey results are analyzed before dissemination. In general, this involves examining the quality of the data at both the micro and macro levels. At the micro level, checks are performed on the data to verify internal consistency and identify extreme values. At the macro level, the data are subjected to a detailed quality review process, including a comparative analysis to prior year.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects that could identify any person, business, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

Revisions and seasonal adjustment

Quarterly estimates are provided for the most current quarter available. The data for the previous quarter are revised if necessary. Seasonal adjustments are not made to the data.

Data accuracy

While considerable effort is made to ensure high standards throughout all stages of collection and processing, the resulting estimates are inevitably subject to a certain degree of error. These errors can be broken down into two major types: non-sampling and sampling. Since the survey is a census of the target population, only non-sampling errors are possible.

Non-sampling errors may occur for many reasons. For example, non-response is an important source of non-sampling error. Population coverage, differences in the interpretation of questions, incorrect information from respondents, and mistakes in recording, coding and processing data are other examples of non-sampling errors.

Non-sampling errors are controlled through a careful design of the questionnaire, the use of a minimal number of simple concepts and consistency checks. Coverage error was minimized by using multiple sources to update the frame.

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