By Poyi (Natalie) Leung
A total of 400 brand new buses equipped with the Global Positioning System (GPS) will hit the Macau roads and the service frequency is also expected to increase by 40 percent starting August 1, the head of the Transport Bureau (DSAT) announced.
DSAT director Wong Wan told lawmakers at the Legislative Assembly yesterday that a string of arrangements have been set to be rolled out on August 1 when the new bus service model comes into effect.
Of which, bus service frequency is expected to rise by an average of 40 percent, passengers will be able to enjoy the interchange concessions even though the two buses are of different companies, all buses will be installed the broadcasting system, and up to 400 GPS-equipped new vehicles will become operational, enabling the bureau to monitor the service frequency, Wong said.
However, at the same time he has warned drivers to be patient and well prepared for the increased traffic on the roads.
In mid-June the DSAT will implement the fourth and the last phase of bus route adjustments, aimed to support the new service model in which one more operator, Reolian, will join the local market.
After that Wong said the bureau will begin the publicity campaigns of the changes to be introduced on August 1, as well as to print out leaflets detailing all the 59 bus routes and the locations of the bus stops.
On the other hand, the DSAT chief disclosed that the preliminary draft to revise the taxi regulations has been completed and will be presented for consultation at a later time.
He said increased penalties have been proposed especially for offences such as drivers rejecting passengers, deliberately taking a longer route to arrive at the destination and selecting customers.
He also pointed out complaints against taxi drivers had more than doubled when compared to 2009, but stressed that the government is confident that the situation can be enhanced through reinforced law enforcement and law updates.
Moreover, Wong told lawmakers that details about the new service contract with yellow taxis should be announced in August.
He also said the bureau is studying how many more new licences are needed as another way to improve Macau’s taxi service.