Roads construction, protests cause severe traffic jams

Roads construction protestsMassive traffic jams were observed on major city roads for many hours owing to extensive road construction works going on in different areas and the protests held in front of the Lahore Press Club on Thursday.

The roads facing the massive traffic mess included: Canal Road, Ferozpur Road, Wahdat Road, Jail Road, The Mall, Davis Road, Lower Mall and Allama Iqbal Road. Traffic also remained blocked on G.T Road, Sagian Pull, Mozang and Chungi Amar Sadhu.

Chief Traffic Officer Syed Ahmad Mobin inspected the traffic situation on major roads but traffic wardens were observed helpless in managing the huge traffic influx. Ambulances carrying emergencies were stuck in the traffic mess while the road users had to face a lot of trouble for over four hours to move from one place to the other.

The ambulances of Edhi Foundation could not respond to emergencies timely on Ravi Pul, Jail Road, Ferozpur Road, Shadbagh and Data Sahib. The spokesperson of Edhi Foundation on the issue said that neither their ambulance could respond to emergencies timely nor could they shift the patients to hospitals in time. He added that delay in response time had ultimately added to sufferings of patients and their families. Such situations some times claim patients, he warned.

Moreover, the traffic mess on major city roads also hindered the ambulances of Rescue 1122 from timely responding to emergencies at Darogha Wala, Mehmood Booti and Naen Sukh due to traffic mess at G.T Road, Yadgar and Sagian Pull, respectively.

It is learnt that Rescue 1122 responds to around 220 t 250 emergencies daily and 50 per cent of the emergencies are carried through Canal Road and Ferozpur Road. However, Canal Road remains busy due to construction which bars ambulances from free move towards emergencies and hospitals. It is also learnt that, out of the total emergencies in a day, around 12 per cent emergencies are reported fatal. So, the delay in response to fatal emergencies means that around 15 to 20 people loose their lives daily.

Moreover, the repairing and construction work at many points of the Canal Road results in fatal road accidents, especially for motorcyclists. Neither the City Traffic Police nor Project Director of Canal Road has so far bothered to notice this factor. One side of the road could have been closed to avoid accidents but the plan is not in sight so far.

Talking to The News, Chief Traffic Officer Syed Ahmad Mobin said that, due to extensive construction work on major projects, they were facing serious traffic problem in the provincial metropolis. However, he added, they had given advertisements in print and electronic media about traffic situation and citizens could use alternate routes for their convenience.

That the Lahore Press Club front had become a hub of protest demonstrations, he had appointed additional traffic wardens to maintain the smooth flow of traffic, he said, responding to a query. Traffic situation would ultimately improve by January 8, 2012 after the completion of Canal Road construction, he maintained. – Thenews