Amidst the festive season, with people leaving their homes for vacations, the Mumbai-Pune Expressway is grappling with its usual challenges of traffic snarls and congestion, particularly at toll booths. Numerous commuters took to social media platforms to voice their concerns. One individual highlighted the frequent breakdown of cars on the expressway, while others raised issues about mismanagement.
As the holiday and festive season draws near, the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, a vital link connecting two major cities and acting as a gateway to favoured vacation destinations such as Mahabaleshwar and Panchgani, is witnessing a surge in congestion. Commuters are voicing discontent over prolonged travel durations and frequent traffic snarls, prompting inquiries into the expressway's effectiveness during peak hours.
One user on X shared, 'Finally, after 7 hours and 30 minutes, I have reached Pune from Mumbai. New record!'
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Once hailed as a pinnacle of cutting-edge infrastructure, the Mumbai-Pune Expressway is now presenting significant challenges for drivers, particularly during peak rush hours. As the holiday season intensifies, it becomes imperative to tackle these traffic issues diligently to guarantee seamless travel for commuters venturing to diverse vacation destinations.
This comes a day after a special request by the administration. Anticipating significant traffic congestion in the ghat section of the Pune-Mumbai Expressway during the consecutive Christmas holidays, Additional Director General (Traffic) Ravinder Kumar Singal issued a crucial travel advisory on Saturday. Singal emphasised the need for heavy motor vehicle owners and drivers, through their respective associations, to refrain from using the Expressway between 6am and 12 noon from Saturday to Monday.
Explaining the rationale behind the advisory, Singal highlighted, "The upcoming Christmas holidays on Saturday (Dec 23), Sunday (Dec 24), and Monday (Dec 25) are expected to draw a considerable number of cars onto the Pune-Mumbai Expressway, potentially leading to extensive traffic buildup in the ghat section."
To preempt traffic congestion in the ghat areas, Singal underscored the temporary halting of heavy vehicles before these sections. He elaborated, "It's observed that the simultaneous movement of heavy vehicles and cars during peak hours from 6am to 12pm often results in traffic snarls, prompting the need for this cautionary advisory."
Singal urged heavy motor vehicle owners and drivers, via their associations, to heed this advisory and refrain from using the Expressway during these specified hours. He emphasised that delayed departures would contribute not only to a safer and smoother commute but also to fuel and time savings for all travellers.
The advisory aims to ensure a more manageable traffic flow during the festive period, promoting safer and more convenient journeys for all commuters while averting potential gridlocks in the ghat sections of the Pune-Mumbai Expressway.