Sunday, August 15, 2004

Bangkok's affliction begins to plague Bangalore

Bangalore bringing in Bangkok blues
New Indian Express

BANGALORE: City roads are choking with traffic. It’s just not during the peak hours, but at anytime.

The constant stream of vehicles in every direction is a pointer that the city is choking. At this rate, Bangalore is in danger of becoming another Bangkok, notorious for its traffic jams. It is not because of an increase in vehicles but because of an ignorance of traffic rules and reckless driving among drivers.

While the root cause is the increasing two-wheeler population, the blame squarely rests on a poor public transport system. Those who work and go to college prefer their own two wheels rather than the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) buses.

The bus is shunned due to the unimaginative routing and long waits. And even if the bus does arrive, it is packed like sardines.

At present, traffic is on everyone’s mind. The driving distances and time have increased and become more stretched, complain Bangaloreans. The bad state of roads also contributes to motorists’ travails.

In Bangkok, people get up early to prepare food for their family members who have to leave home early. Though Thais have suffered traffic jams for many years, they have come to accept it. But now there is hope and they feel it will be solved soon with the introduction of skytrain and the subway.

But one huge difference in both cities is that in Bangkok, motorists respect traffic rules. The delays are caused due to the ever-increasing number of vehicles. The situation is now better since a lot of flyovers have come up.

In Bangalore, there is no order. People always disobey and break the rules. Hand signal is used instead of indicators, turns are taken where they are not allowed and overtaking happens in crowded areas.

Drivers themselves seem to be in a hurry and angry with slow moving vehicles. They drive fast, zigzag and always honk, even when they know there is no space to move. It is better if drivers respect traffic rules to help keep up a smooth flow of traffic.

The traffic jams need more attention from policy makers because the road is the lifeblood in a metro. Without flow of traffic, nothing can be achieved.


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