Suggestions: In a city of accidents and traffic jams are motorcycles safer than buses?

The Urban Resource Centre feels motorcycles for women could be the answer to Karachi’s transport problem.

Suleman Saadat September 30, 2011


Arif Hasan and Mansoor Raza interviewed 768 people on Karachi’s roads as part of their survey into the possible use of motorcycles as mass transport system.

They presented their findings at the Urban Resource Centre (URC) on Thursday and discussed road planning and road safety, highlighting issues brought forward in the survey. According to research, the public transport system affects the city’s social, cultural and financial life adversely and creates security problems.

They blamed miscommunication between the provincial and federal government for road snags and the troubles faced by the people of Karachi. The presentation also mentioned that badly thought-out plans are what have led to present-day traffic problems.

The main focus of the presentation was on establishing an affordable commuting system that allows 20,000 to 30,000 people to get from point A to point B within an hour. The current system can only transport 4,000 to 6,000 people at a time.

“You want to promote the motorcycle or you want to regulate it because the motorcycle culture is not going to stop,” was URC Chairman Arif Hasan’s argument.

Mumbai’s circular railway system covers 12 per cent of its traffic and takes up only two lanes. Such a system would take about 10 years to complete.

“Fifty per cent of the people who are injured or killed in road accidents are motorcyclists,” said Syed Ameer Hussain, the Road Traffic Injury Research and Prevention Centre programme manager. “Riders should follow road ethics and safety rules to avoid accidents.”

Another angle that the presentation covered was that of problems faced by women. Female university students featured in the presentation agreed to the fact that girls have to face a lot of problems when they use public transport. They said that a motorcycle designed specifically for women would be adopted without question as it would be far better than travelling in a bus where they have to deal with uncomfortable stares. “It is as if we are aliens and we have to bear it till we reach our destination because it is a public bus,” they said.

Male students also agreed that given Karachi’s current situation, a motorcycle would be the safest way to travel, especially during traffic jams.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 30th,  2011.


geoff | 10 years ago | Reply

Why is a women stared at until she gets to her destination. Is it because the men are evil low life's.

Farhan | 10 years ago | Reply

Underage should not allow riding a bike especially on roads. I happened to be a witness where teenagers fall of the bike while they were going somewhere (very fast), they were ok but because of his act he caused major traffic jam.

If you want to be good citizen or call yourself proud Pakistani you must obey Pakistani laws. Otherwise just go and get injured/killed by your HUMWATAN.

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