Zane DeSilva statement
Transport Green Paper tabled
The introduction of speed cameras and a reduction in the use of fossil fuels were among the recommendations in a Green Paper on Transportation tabled yesterday in the House of Assembly.
Zane DeSilva, the transport minister, said other suggestions included 20 new special taxi permits and increase in the number of rental minicars to 500.
More than 2,400 residents contributed to a survey which was used to draw up the paper, the first comprehensive review of transportation since 2002.
Mr DeSilva said the “overarching themes” that came out of the public consultation were safety, reliability and “the desire for frictionless transport experiences”.
Almost 40 per cent of residents surveyed criticised the condition of the island’s roads and said they disagreed that they were properly maintained.
A total of 40 per cent ranked the roads “somewhat safe” for driving and 37 per cent said they were “not so safe”.
Respondents suggested the use of technology to speed up the fines process for driving offences and that the Transport Control Department should be linked to the court system so drivers with unpaid fines could be blocked from renewing their licences.
And about 75 per cent of those surveyed said that the fines and demerit points system was not enough to deter bad drivers.
A total of 40 per cent of respondents said they were prepared to carpool on their way to work or school to cut down on congestion.
Tourists surveyed said that not enough taxis accepted credit cards and that more minicars should be available to rent.
The paper agreed that there were several problems with the taxi that also affected residents.
It added: “It is known that taxi drivers do not all ensure their taxis are on the road the mandated 16 hours per day. They do not all have second or part-time drivers to cover the 16-hour day.”
The Green Paper added: “The take up of credit card facilities by drivers has been slow. The East and West Ends of the island, as well as the airport, can be critically short of lift capacity.”
• To read the Green Paper and Zane DeSilva’s statement, in full click on the PDF links under “Related Media”
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