Thursday, May 03, 2007

Two wheelers jostle for space on the roads

The two-wheelers on the road are increasing with every year in Bangalore city and everyone seems to want independence from public transport - the BMTC buses. The first thing one does after arriving in the city is to get oneself a two wheeler or a 4 wheeler depending on one's afford-ability. This has got to stop, we need to build more public confidence in the public transport. London is a great example for efficient public transport.

The upside of the two wheeler boom is a growth by 8.55% during the year 2005-06 (source). Sales crossing 7 million two wheelers at 7,600,801 during the year 2005-06. Two Wheelers exports in 2004-05 crossed 300,000 mark at 366,724 and recorded a growth rate of plus 38% over the previous year (source). The Bajajs and the Munjals must be smiling! These numbers pale in comparison to China's numbers - they produce around 12 million 2 wheelers a year! (source).

The down side of all this is the cluttered streets with over 2,009,081 two wheelers on Bangalore streets (source), chaotic traffic, hours of waiting on the roads, accidents (majority affected / casualties are two wheeler drivers) and high pollution. If we have 2,400,000 passengers handled daily by BMTC buses and and and almost equal number of two wheelers (2,009,081) we know where the problem is!!! Remember the New Delhi experience and two-wheeler riders dying from lung cancer? We sure need to strike a balance somewhere.
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