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Thanjavur road a nightmare for motorists

THOSE who use Thanjavur Road are facing great difficulty and even emergency vehicles are not spared due to the never-ending traffic snarls. Ambulances with sirens blaring and lights flashing have to come to a grinding halt even as they transport patients for emergency treatment. Precious time is lost and the most experienced ambulance drivers find all their ef-forts to extricate themselves from jams wasted. Such a scene was seen on Wednesday in the city Motorists were leaning on their horns, contributing massively to sound pollution, a regular occurrence, according to nearby residents. R Lavanya, a witness to the ambulance being caught up in a traffic bottleneck, was unable to move her two-wheeler. She said, "We have been experiencing this for many years and it has now become a part of our lives with traffic jams during peak hours." The best way to use the expressway from the city to reach Thanjavur, Chennai or Tintivanam National Highway and by-pass roads is to take the road from Gandhi Market, a distance of 2 km.

A couple of years ago, it took just five minutes to travel the stretch but now it takes 10 to 15 minutes because of traffic congestion. There are also no signals to regulate traffic flow. The perilous traffic on the road has left parents worried and many make sure they ac-company their wards to drop or collect their wards from schools in the mornings and evenings. C Swan, a class VII student who used to cycle with her friends to school, said, "Things have changed now and I have to pil-lion ride with my father to reach school because of the risks involved due to traffic." Another factor for the chaos on the road is the presence of roadside vendors with their mo-bile eateries which take up valuable road space. As a result, motorists have trouble negotiating the stretch. Even during non-peak hours, the road is busy as it is the only route to the city from adjoining districts and nearby towns.

 M Sekaran, president, Federation of Consumer and Service Organisations, said heavy vehicles from Main Guard Gate in order to reach Thanjavur Road are directed to use Vellamandi Road to help reduce traffic snarls observed near Gandhi Market. He said all vehicles, excluding two-wheelers, should be directed to Vellamandi Road to ease the flow of traffic. Sekaran said, "There was a monthly meeting with district transport officials before Deepavali and various measures were put forward so steps could be taken. Simultaneously, the Corporation must perform its duty in identifying encroachments near Gandhi Market and Thanjavur Road, which would help motorists and students." When asked about why traders had not shifted to the new integrated market near Kalliku-i, Sekaran said that they are one of the reasons for the traffic situation but should not be made to take all the Mane.
source: epaper. newindianexpress. com//c/23404921 

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