In a serious bid to improve the public transport system and help curb pollution levels, PMPML is all set to deploy 25 electric buses to ply in the city within the next 1o days.
According to a recent report, the busses will ply all around the city and the IT parks. The buses will have a power bank like device to ensure that the bus doesn’t get run out of power in the event of a low or discharged battery.
In the first phase, 25 buses will be deployed, each 9 metres long with 40-45 seats. 15 such buses are to be kept in Bhekrainagar deport while the rest will be assigned to Nigdi Depot.
At the trial runs, these buses were able to clock 225 km in a day which equals any regular PMPML bus.
Despite the expensive technology deployed, the fares promise to remain the same. PMPML proposed to deploy 330 more such electric buses by the end of October 2019. Moreover, the busses are brought under the arrangement that the contractor will be completely responsible for the maintenance of the buses.
Electric buses are certainly a welcome initiative, however, PMPML must ensure our basic issues are resolved, quip regular city commuters speaking to Pune365
I have been travelling in PMPML buses for the past two years and there hasn’t been a single improvement I have noticed, either in the service or in the buses says, Neha Dhurne, a PR executive.
In my line of work, it often happens that I have to return late at night. In such circumstances, any common woman opts for public transport in order to stay safe. However, the scenario in Pune is completely different. PMPML buses are more unsafe than the autos and cabs.
There is no security provided in the buses, the lights inside don’t work, there are frequent breakdowns, the conductors are not well trained, no alarm button and no police personnel. Honestly, the security levels in PMPML buses is pathetic…
I really hope they have considered the safety of women on these new electric buses which is a dire need. Pune is growing like any other metropolis and no metropolitan city can afford to compromise on the safety of women.
The last bus leaves at 11:45pm and it is critical that one police constable should be there, or at least, a security alarm should be installed on every reserved ladies seat, Neha added.
The buses should be cleaned and maintained well unlike what’s happening now. Conductors should impose a fine from the commuters if they are found spitting or littering in the bus, says Mukesh Prajapati, Businessman.
Am not a frequent traveller in PMPML buses, but that is because of the filthy condition of their buses. However, if they are maintained properly and have the necessary safety precaiutions and operate efficiently, I will certainly use PMPML.
Agreeing with Neha, Mukesh quips that safety of any individual should not be compromised, I hope while designing the electric buses they have taken this factor in considerations.
Fire extinguishers, alarm buttons for women and first-aid boxes are imperative in every PMPML bus. The bus driver and conductor should ensure checks of electric busses before they depart. Just relying on back up power banks are not advisable, as they may run out of charge too, Mukesh added.
With these buses, there will certainly be a reduction in the air pollution levels as PMPML contributed a lot to the poor air quality, says Harshvardhan Gaikwad senior software professional.
Power banks and charged buses are however just not enough to avoid breakdowns.
There should be charging ports at every third bus stop in the city which should be well protected to avoid stealing of PMPML charging equipment.
While speaking about the needs in PMPML bus, Gaikwad said overcrowding in buses should be avoided as that also contributes to a lot of damage in the busses.
Their frequency should be increased and the conductors and drivers should be trained and equipped to handle basic repairs in the buses, Gaikwad adds.