The road never 'sleeps'

The use of vehicles on the roads exceeded capacity, resulting in severe congestion everywhere.

11 Feb 2024 03:30pm
Photo for illustration purposes only. - 123RF
Photo for illustration purposes only. - 123RF

Every day, road users, regardless of whether they are driving a car, lorry, bus or motorcycle, would surely experience stress when facing traffic congestion every day, especially during weekends.

Moreover, traffic congestion occurred during the commute to or from work because the locations were far from their respective homes.

The use of vehicles on the roads exceeded capacity, resulting in severe congestion everywhere.

This was because most citizens preferred to settle in locations quite far from their workplaces compared to seeking accommodation nearby, due to various factors including rental rates or housing prices being more affordable.

However, they were willing to spend approximately an hour traveling to work every day, even though the distance was only about 20 kilometres.

Moving to any place at specific times will inevitably lead to situations where road users get stuck in traffic congestion, not only in the hustle and bustle of the city but also in rural areas.

Regardless of the time, whether in the morning when going to work or dropping off children at school or in the afternoon after finishing work until having to enjoy the sunset in their vehicles.

This also applied to lunch breaks, where workers may choose to explore eateries beyond their workplace or office premises.

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Hence, the surge in the number of vehicles on the roads contributed to traffic congestion, even though it was a routine part of motorists' daily commutes.

Traffic congestion was also contributed by several other factors, including accidents or vehicles cutting in line to enter junctions.

When natural disasters like heavy rain occurred, vehicles would often slow down to ensure safety, leading to prolonged traffic congestion.

This would extend the duration of traffic congestion sometimes longer than necessary.

The question is, what is the purpose of public transportation provided by the government?

The role of public transportation agencies like Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bersepadu (KTMB), Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) and Light Rail Transit (LRT) is to provide an alternative mode of transportation to facilitate users and alleviate traffic congestion.

However, despite these options being available, many people still preferred to drive their vehicles.

The question arose regarding why individuals were not actively utilise public transportation as an initiative to mitigate the growing issue of severe traffic congestion.

Soon, approaching the Chinese New Year celebration, people will return to their hometowns.

So, what steps should authorities take to reduce traffic congestion every time the festive season approaches? Can the presence of public transportation in certain areas reduce traffic congestion?

Therefore, road users need to use the available public transportation to reduce traffic congestion, especially during the five working days and festive seasons.

For those living nearby, carpooling is advisable when heading to the same destination.

This action can reduce road accidents due to microsleep caused by excessive fatigue from prolonged driving, as well as to strengthen the relationship between individuals.

Nevertheless, the public is also advised to take new initiatives to reduce traffic congestion to ensure their mental health is maintained and not disrupt their rest time.

Siti Nur Qurratul'aina is a Sinar Harian journalist.