Empty buses drain TNSTC-Madurai
Occupancy rate in TNSTC-Madurai is decreased by 14%. Reasons being Share autos running in Madurai city, and increasing number of personal vehicles etc.,
Some more from our observations..
1. Most of the buses running in Madurai-Nellai, Madurai-Nagercoil, Madurai-Tiruchendur are converted as BPRs. Suggestion: Madurai region should operate equal number of normal buses as well. They can operate more BPRs during peak hours and in non-peak hours, it can be reduced. Recently TNSTC-Tirunelveli did this. In Madurai/Tiruchendur/Tuticorin they have boards clearly indicating the stops of each buses.
2. Many bus of Madurai region got extension. Some of them are Palani-Tiruchendur, Coimbatore/Tirupur/Erode-Rameshwaram, Kodaikanal-Coimbatore via Madurai(This is old Kodai-Nellai buses), Tirupur-Nagercoil/Tirunelveli etc., Suggestion: Instead of doing many such extensions, they can concentrate on operating more new routes from Madurai or operate more city services in Madurai city itself. This will enable more connectivity inside Madurai city.
MADURAI: The steep fall in occupancy rate in the government-run Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation (TNSTC) buses from Madurai region has sent alarm bells ringing among the officials. Although officials have managed to improve various factors including reducing the average age of the buses, accident ratio and increasing the tyre life and mileage, saving the public transport from this scenario has become difficult.
Data available with the TNSTC, Madurai region shows that there is a whopping 14% decline in the passenger numbers between 2010-11 and 2012-13. The occupancy ratio in 2012-13 is a mere 71.65% compared to 90.41% in 2010-11 and 85.46% in 2011-12. The number of passengers in 2010-11 was a whopping 122.88 crore with a fleet strength of 2,597, whereas the numbers declined to 67.96 crore in 2012-13.
Officials of TNSTC, Madurai division which comprises Madurai, Dindigul and Virudhunagar regions with an estimated Rs 2.31 crore revenue per day, attribute the fall to the large number of share autos, auto rickshaws and the increase in personal vehicles plying on the roads.
D Thothathri, deputy manager (commercial), TNSTC said, “Share autos in the city can be of good service to the public provided they concentrate on areas where bus services are unavailable. But, in Madurai city, share autos lure bus passengers leaving the public transport system to stumble. During a recent share auto strike, the TNSTC buses netted Rs 1.5 lakh additional revenue in Anna Nagar area alone. Such is the magnitude of share auto collection in the city. There is nothing wrong in share autos plying in the city. But they should not target passengers waiting for public transport which accounts to big loss to the department.”
T Kumaresan, general manager, TNSTC, Madurai branch pointed out to increasing number of two-wheelers and four-wheelers as another factor in the decline. “A considerable decline is inevitable every year due to the increasing number of personal vehicles. Decline is there despite TNSTC buses have improved in many factors including usage of lesser-aged vehicles and reduction in the accident rate,” he said.
Madurai region has successfully reduced the accident rate in two years. In 2012-13, the accident ratio was only 0.18 per one lakh km compared to 0.23 in 2010-11. Similarly, fuel efficiency has been improved from 5.16 from 5.37 in three years.
Source: Times of India – Madurai