TRANSPORT PUBLIC SERVICES * WORLDWIDE
* Viet Nam - Downgraded buses continue to ply in city streets
(Photo from SGGP - Buses with ragged seats (L) and broken parts (R) still ply in the streets)
Ho Chi Minh City,Viet nam -Saigon, by Quoc Hung and Thuy Doan -Aug 18, 2013: ... The buses plying the Ho Chi Minh City streets are in poor and downgraded condition... When building a bus network, the City aimed to make it a foundation for sustainable public transport, to encourage people to use buses to reduce traffic congestion, protect the environment, and create an organized and civic urban lifestyle. However, the current bus network has not been able to meet these expectations... Therefore, lack of maintenance of buses has seen their present downgraded condition... In 2002, when Ho Chi Minh City had just started the bus service there were 587 buses, with most vehicles now past their expiry date. In later years, the number of buses increased to 2,434. These too need upgrading or replacing... During the period 2011-2015, the City Department of Transportation plans to buy 1,680 new buses at a total cost of nearly VND2 trillion...
* Israel - Haifa’s new long buses make a less than stellar start
(Photo by Rami Shlush: Metronit in Haifa. Some locals complain of slow speeds and long waiting times, but at least getting on is nice and easy)
Haifa,Israel -Haaretz, by Roy (Chicky) Arad -Aug. 18, 2013: -- Haifa launched its new rapid-transit system, the Metronit, over weekend, but let’s say it’s making slow but steady progress. The long so-called bi-articulated buses have their own dedicated lanes, and because we’re talking about Haifa, they run on Shabbat... It took a while before one Metronit arrived. Roman Grimsky, a brawny fellow wearing a Likud T-shirt, had just come back from the beach. “They said the Metronit would come every few minutes,” he said. “I’ve been waiting 20 minutes, and earlier I waited half an hour. It stops at every station, even when nobody’s waiting.” ... According to Grimsky, the new system needs twice as much time to get him where he’s going. “I’m for the [regular] buses,” he said...
* Malaysia - School buses exceeding 30 years not allowed on the road after Jan 1'
(Photo: A Schoolbus in Kuala Lumpur)
Kuala Lumpur,Malaysia -Bernama/New Strait Times -19 August 2013: -- Effective January 2015, school buses which are more than 30 years old will not be allowed on the road and stern action will be taken against the operators concerned, Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar said today... Those who failed to comply with the regulation would be charged in court and they faced losing their licence, he told reporters when met after witnessing the signing of an agreement of understanding for the 1Malaysia School Bus Project between DMS Dynamic Sdn Bhd and Chery Automobile (M) Sdn Bhd. Syed Hamid said they were currently 17,000 school buses registered with SPAD nationwide and 2,000 of them were more than 30 years old... The government, he said, provided a financing scheme of up to RM250,000 for a nine-year-period to help the operators to replace their old school buses with new ones...