Bus lanes should be suspended during industrial action to ease congestion and help environment, says Armstrong

Transport Kellie Armstrong

Motorists should be allowed to use the bus lanes to ease traffic congestion and help the environment during the upcoming bus strike, Alliance MLA Kellie Armstrong has said.

The Strangford MLA was speaking ahead of the impending strike by Translink drivers tomorrow (Tuesday), which will last for a week. She said the lack of buses gave an opportunity which could bring benefits.

“Alliance believes in the right of workers to strike, however there are consequences to that,” said Ms Armstrong.

“The lack of buses for a week will force many to use their own cars, which could lead to significant congestion on our roads, particularly at a time when many pupils will still need to travel to school to sit exams.

“Alliance has requested new Infrastructure Minister John O’Dowd take action to suspend the dedicated bus lanes for the duration of the strike. While parked cars would still not be allowed, suspending enforcement for those driving in them would ease the expected congestion, while also being better for the environment as it would reduce the volume of cars idling in traffic.

“It would be a sensible approach in terms of maximising traffic flows, especially during rush hours, and minimising air pollution, until the industrial action is finished and bus services resume.”