Public Transport is possibly the cheapest mode of transport when it comes to metropolitan areas (urban areas). Now metropolitan areas are those cities where the population is in a high growth. With the recent developments in infrastructure, people shift to these metropolitan areas for better opportunities. Thus leading to the continual use of public transports. Considering the fact that these means of transport are less used in semi-urban areas, metropolitan areas or the urban areas are taken into consideration.
Now, how safe is this mode of transport as compared to others? Below are some of the possible demerits of using public transport preferably in urban areas.
There are several demerits or possible threats when we use a public transport. An increasing amount of violent activities has raised a serious question on whether public transport should be used on a daily basis by the commuters, considering the various threats attached to it.
THEFT/ROBBERY - Public transport has a huge number of commuters using it. Because of the cheap base price of the ticket, about 3/4th of a population in an urban area rely on public transport. This, on the other hand, increases robbery. People who steal and rob prefer crowded places to carry out their actions. Public Transport undeniably being one of the crowded places, there is a high risk of getting robbed.
INCREASE IN TERRORIST ACTIVITIES - With the recent concern rising over terrorism, the terrorist target areas which are heavily crowded. Public Transports being one them has been their favorite spot. Several bombings have happened in the last decade that accounts to public transport. Since the number of lives is more, terrorists find it easy to target these transport systems and make a demand. Which makes Public Transport a lot riskier than other means of transport.
STAMPEDE OF MASS CROWD - Public Transport is by far the cheapest means of transport as already discussed considering the low-cost operations it involves. This, in turn, attracts a lot of commuters who find traveling long distances in a cheaper rate desirable. As a matter of fact, people gather in huge numbers in busy hours. This leads to stampede during these peak hours. There are cases where even people are killed because of the high number of commuters trying to catch a local train in a city like Mumbai. It is unlikely to catch public transport without a heavy crowd. Therefore the risks to life also come with the cheap price.
UNRELIABLE DURING NATURAL CALAMITIES - In a city like Mumbai where the local trains play an important part in the day to day activities, rains, on the other hand, have a substantial negative impact on it. During monsoon most of the tracks are heavily flooded, increasing the risks of the train getting off the track. This also happens in areas such as Delhi, Kolkata where Metros or Trams are used. Natural calamities like heavy flooding disrupt the usual path of trains or trams causing significant concerns for commuters.
In spite of all the major hurdles, we are till now considerably safe in using public transports. Public Transports are fully government owned so in a way government takes full responsibility for any risks. The above-discussed risks were witnessed sluggishly in recent years. Although the numbers are increasing, still there are some benefits for which the public has not lost complete trust on the public transport.
CHEAP - Public transports are way cheaper than the road transports. It is because of this fact that a number of people use the trains and buses so the cost of fuel along with maintenance cost is divided and hence reduced. A place like Mumbai in India has local train services with the ticket price as less as 30 rupees for 20 kilometers. This makes it a preferred choice for commuters to use public transport on the daily basis.
ECO-FRIENDLY - This is no doubt by far the most opt out characteristic for which a public transport sells. Because when it comes to public transportation systems like Metros or the railways (locals in Mumbai), there is considerably less pollution as compared to vehicles on the road. Railways rely on electricity causing less or no byproducts. This ensures the environment is free from harmful pollutants like Carbon Monoxide, Carbon Dioxide, and Sulphur Dioxide.
Nevertheless, public transport is considerably safe if the risks are tackled in a skillful way. Since looking at the better side of a story is always advisable, the positive side of public transport is truly amenable. Although the above-said risks do pose a threat to our lives when we travel for a living. Still having faith in this system gives us strength to tackle these negative thoughts.