Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Transport businesses, including railway and buses, have prepared plans to serve the massive influx of passengers travelling during Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday, Vietnam News Agency reported.
In big cities like Hà Nội and HCM City, construction sites of important traffic projects have also been arranged to take less spaces of the streets, in a bid to avoid congestion in peak hours.
According to a report from the Hà Nội City Traffic Committee, the city has 637 transport coach routes operating in six stations, providing a total 4,751 trips each day.
The committee has also asked transport companies to be ready to provide additional vehicles when needed.
Further, inspectors must monitor transport and be prepared to fine violators for overloading, as well as guard against the use of illegal coaches and terminals. Authorities must also prevent unreasonable increases in fares to take advantage of people who are returning home.
Overloaded coaches or coaches picking up passengers at incorrect locations are to be given strict punishments to ensure traffic remains safe during the Tết holiday, said senior lieutenant-colonel Đỗ Thanh Bình, deputy head of the Traffic Police Department.
Other violations such as parking in wrong places, travelling in wrong lanes, drivers who drink alcohol, and coaches travelling in wrong lanes are to be fined, as per the Law on Road Traffic, he said.
In an inspection of bus stations in Hà Nội, Khuất Việt Hùng, deputy head of the National Traffic Safety Committee, said that Hà Nội and HCM City were two hotspots that will witness severe traffic congestion in the days prior to Tết.
To deal with the situation, Hùng has asked the cities’ police and relevant offices to carry out measures to reduce traffic congestion, as well as impose strict penalties for traffic violators.
“The Traffic Police Department must stop the use of unregistered coaches and bus-stops, especially along belt road No 3 in Hà Nội,” said Hùng.
The committee has set up hotlines to report traffic congestion and violations.
According to Phan Thị Thu Hiền, deputy head of the Directorate for Roads of Việt Nam, in recent years, coach tickets have been sold online, which helped passengers save time as they did not have to queue at stations to purchase tickets.
However, many passengers had to pay higher prices than what was listed.
According to regulations, if businesses want to increase fares, they must submit proposals to transport departments and then publish the new fares. But during the Tết holiday, due to the enormous demand of travellers, many coach businesses increased fares without permission.
The Urban Traffic Centre was asked to co-operate with the Hà Nội Transport Corporation to increase the number of urban bus trips to coach and railway stations, and airports before and after Tết.
Also, there are 45 trains daily from Hà Nội, carrying some 14,000 passengers.
“The Hà Nội railway station would see a sudden increase in passengers in the days prior to Tết, and the number of trains would be increased,” said a railway representative. — VNS