Commuters ire over insufficient vehicle ferry services, demand construction of Chatham-Bambooflat bridge

Port Blair
20 May 2018

Despite the best efforts of the Department of Shipping, problems of the vehicle ferry passengers and commuters seem to have no end. Majority of the passengers, availing the ferry services from Chatham to Bambooflat, interviewed by this Correspondent have expressed their unhappiness, travelling in ferry services. They are of the opinion that due to heavy rush and over crowded, the safety aspects are often neglected. They have to travel in a very congested atmosphere and the risk of accidents looms large. Though, vehicle ferries are providing its services from the early morning, exactly at 5.40 am and continue throughout the day till the last ferry at 8.30 pm, passengers seems to be dissatisfied with the quality of the ferry services. Among the total number of people using the ferry services, majority of them are office going commuters, followed by students and reaching office, schools and colleges remain their top priority. At times, due to the ferry services, they are not been able to reach their destination on time.  
Around 50 percent of the commuters are of the opinion that more vehicle ferry should be operated in this route to cater to the growing population availing the ferry services.  It is estimated that over 5000 passengers are travelling in the Chatham-Bambooflat ferry services daily. Though majority of those who use ferry service are from the lower strata of the society, they preferred better comfort even if there is marginal increase in the fare structure. Most of the passengers interviewed opined that it was the lack of   adequate number of services, especially during the peak hours. Almost all the passengers were of the opinion that the administration should work for a permanent solution to ease this problem. They wanted that the Bambooflat-Chatham Bridge project should commence as early as possible for mitigating this problems once for all.