The Malta Independent 17 May 2022, Tuesday

Updated (2): Traffic in St Paul's Bay 'not clear at all' - mayor; Commuters suffering - PN

Wednesday, 29 July 2015, 07:55 Last update: about 8 years ago

The traffic situation in St Paul’s Bay this morning was slightly better than it was yesterday, but it is not true that it was “clear” as some are saying, St Paul’s Bay mayor Graziella Galea told The Malta Independent this afternoon.

Asked to comment about the traffic situation today, following the chaos that took place yesterday with the closing down of the Coast Road, Ms Galea said that that drivers chose to take to the streets earlier than normal today given what happened yesterday.

This meant that the traffic congestion started earlier, at about 6.30am, and continued for a few hours. There were still times when traffic was at a standstill for several minutes. She said that although the traffic was slightly better today, drivers who made use of alternate routes suggested by Transport Authority found very slow traffic flow in Mgarr.

In a statement, the Nationalist Party said the current mess being experienced on Maltese roads is a result of the gross incompetence of this Labour Government led by Muscat, with the past days seeing the north of Malta literally jammed.

Whilst it is a fact that traffic congestion wasn't conceived when Labour came into power, it is also a fact that situation is becoming worse by the day, the statement said.  Decisions being taken by the current administration aren't helping at all, but are simply making the situation worse.

The Nationalist Party empathizes with all hurdles and inconvenience being faced by commuters - in particular with those who are arriving late for work, those who are missing scheduled appointments, as well as those people whose job requires that they are on the road such as salespeople, deliverymen, technicians, taxi/bus/minibus drivers and many others.  The Nationalist Party also empathizes with the tourism industry which is definitely effected negatively whenever such chaos ensues.

This whole Mizzi saga is not only Joe Mizzi's to solve, but it is also Konrad's Mizzi's. Going from one destination to another is taking much longer than it used to. Whilst stuck in traffic, drivers see the fuel gauge drop lower and lower, and this when Malta's fuel prices are among the highest in the EU.

This is not an issue to be placed on the back-burner, the PN said.  Government must give it immediate attention and rather than finding stop-gap solutions and managing by crisis, Government should draw up a long-term effective plan.

***

Earlier

Another day has dawned and it’s another traffic nightmare for motorists.

As from early this morning, traffic jams have piled up in areas both in the north and south of Malta as the closing down of the Coast Road continues to negatively impact the traffic flow on the island.

Once again, people wanting to travel south from Mellieha and St Paul’s Bay are finding it hard to make their way, as they move at a snail’s pace and sometimes are even at a standstill for long minutes.

At the other end, there is also congestion as people wanting to travel north are finding congestion as they seek alternative routes other than the Coast Road.

In all this, Minister Joe Mizzi is conspicuous by his absence. The minister responsible for transport – who in the past as a Labour Opposition MP made so much fuss about the traffic situation in Malta – is still to make his voice heard on the situation.

Drivers have commented that Mr Mizzi was the first to speak up when there were traffic situations at the time he was on the Opposition benches. But now that he is the minister responsible, he is nowhere to be seen.

Given that the two major problems these days are under his responsibility – the abhorring traffic situation and the unreliable public transport service – the least that Minister Mizzi could do is show up and at least try to explain, motorists said.

In a statement this morning, The Bicycling Advocacy Group Malta said that drivers to take extra care of cyclists when using alternative routes to the Coast Road, as since last year cyclists have been forced to use those same alternative routes, because they themselves were banned from the Coast Road by Transport Malta during the earlier construction phases. Drivers are asked to reduce speed and take extra care on bends and corners in case they meet cyclists unexpectedly.

The group also suggested that instead of asking drivers to take alternative routes that were already congested, a better plan would perhaps have been to suggest that drivers avoid unnecessary trips or use alternative modes of transport for the next few days.

Photos: Maltarightnow and Malta Traffic Updates

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