Inter-island quay-New traffic rules set for safety and order


13-August-2012

The inter-island quay is expected to be a safer and more orderly place with the coming into force today of a number of regulations aimed at better managing the area

The Seychelles Ports Authority (SPA) said this forms part of its measures to make the quay – also known as the Cat Cocos jetty – a safer and more organised port.

The SPA said the measures are necessary due to a number of recent accidents, where children and vehicles have fallen off the jetty -- with even lives being lost there, and due to the number of ferries and people commuting to inner islands and vice-versa.

The SPA chief executive Lieutenant Colonel Andre Ciseau was explaining the new measures on Friday to a number of stakeholders, who included users of the quay, taxi drivers’ representative and people with offices on the quay.

He said there have long been demands to step up efforts to better manage the port and that it took them some time because they were first completing a similar project on Praslin and La Digue, which he said had worse traffic management problems than on Mahe.

“We have monitored the situation on Praslin and La Digue for some time and it is at present under control, so now we have moved to Mahe’s inter-island quay. Although we have cargo and passenger boats which load and unload here, as well as a number of other businesses which operate, there are also people who use this area for leisure, such as those who come to watch the boats, an activity which we have nothing against,” he said.

“There are, however, many other people who misuse this area, such as those who park there and play loud music all night, disturbing the peace, others who race their cars there, and a number of vandalism and also damage to infrastructure.”

He said that examples of crimes taking place there included cargo containers being broken into and merchandise stolen and broken bottles and litter strewn everywhere.

“It is for this reason that the ports authority, in collaboration with the departments of transport and the police have worked on a traffic management programme for the quay,” he said.

Starting today, the new measures to control human and vehicular traffic will include manning of a gate that has already been installed there.

A number of areas have also been demarcated for various purposes. This includes a specific area for taxis and buses, areas for members of the public to stand when waiting for disembarking passengers, pedestrian crossing, loading and unloading of cargo area, as well as pick-up and drop-off spots of people.
 
There is also an emergency bay, where two ambulances can stand by to pick up sick, disembarking passengers. 

“Those who have permission to enter the quay with their vehicles – such as buses and taxis – will be allowed in 30 minutes to one hour before passenger boats are due to arrive,” said Mr Ciseau.
 
“Others will have to park outside the quay in newly built parking spaces and enter the quay area on foot.

After working hours, the quay will be off limits to everybody except people who have business there and even those will have to be justified, although the SPA said it will be flexible when managing the area.

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