BFF-33 Sri Lanka deploys troops to control worsening traffic





Sri Lanka deploys troops to control worsening traffic

COLOMBO, Feb 24, 2020 (BSS/AFP) – Sri Lanka will deploy troops to help
police control worsening traffic congestion in the capital, the army said

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, a retired army officer, ordered the military
to assist traffic officers at the main entry and exit points to Colombo, a
city which nearly a million people enter or leave daily, a spokesman said.

The military police will also lend support “in any other area where their
services are required”, spokesman Chandana Wickremasinghe added.

Traffic slows to a snail’s space in Colombo during the morning and evening
rush hours making it one of the slowest road systems in South Asia.

Recent studies have shown average speeds drop below seven kilometres (4.3
miles) an hour in the morning and the evening.

The capital does not have a mass transit system, forcing many to use their
own transport that chokes the narrow streets.

But Sri Lanka began work on its first light rail transit system last year
at an estimated cost of $1.5 billion. The Japanese-funded project is expected
to be operational within about five years.

BSS/AFP/SSS/2002 hrs