Three-pronged strategy to get New Year’s revellers home
A three-pronged strategy by the State Government will help get New Year’s revellers home when the parties are over.
Planning and Infrastructure Minister Alannah MacTiernan today unveiled the strategy to best utilise Perth’s transport capacity, which included:
- train services running all night and key bus routes operating until the early hours, including connections with the 1am, 2am and 3am train services at suburban interchanges;
- more than 1,350 taxis are available to operate on New Year’s Eve, an increase of at least 120 on last year, a special $4.50 surcharge already applies on New Year’s Eve to encourage drivers to be on the road; and
- allowing small charter vehicle, commercial minibus and charter bus operators to ply for passengers on city streets, between midnight and 6am on January 1.
“Even with increased numbers of taxis on the road and extra public transport, it is unreasonable to expect that the taxi fleet can meet the huge demands created on New Year’s Eve,” Ms MacTiernan said.
“Charter vehicle and bus operators are normally banned from doing taxi-type work, but for this one night, they will be able to offer transport at a price agreed to by their customers. However, they will not be able to work taxi ranks.
“The Government has written to all SCV and TC licence plate holders to advise them of the arrangements, and will approach local governments to provide places for these vehicles to operate in key entertainment areas.
“I will consider extending the hours, so these arrangements can begin at 8pm, if the operators put a case to me.”
The Minister said the arrangements had been agreed to after discussions with the Motor Traders Association, which represents charter operators.
“We have made a major effort to increase the size of Perth’s taxi fleet, releasing an additional 208 new licences this year and providing incentives to attract people into the industry,” she said.
“These initiatives are working, but a taxi service which was big enough to meet demand on New Year’s Eve would not be viable for the rest of the year.
“Even with all these additional services, partygoers should plan their night and make sure they can get home.”
Ms MacTiernan said that details of New Year’s Eve public transport services were available from Transperth at http://www.transperth.wa.gov.au/Default.aspx?tabid=779 and an overview of late-night transport options was available from the Department for Planning and Infrastructure at http://www.dpi.wa.gov.au/taxis/14761.asp.