Wednesday, July 16, 2014
TNSTC service experience a bitter one
Made a trip from Chennai to Nagercoil on 14th and returned on 15th.
As it was a quick trip, On 14th July at 8.45 pm only, the need to visit Nagercoil was finalised, immediately contacted Infant Jesus travels and asked for a seat in the 9 pm bus over phone and immediately got a seat 29 and informed them i will be boarding at Perungalathur they told Bus will come at 9.30 pm at Perungalathur.
Left home by 9 pm and took a share auto to reach Perungalthur.
On the way at Tambaram (GST road from Kadaperi to Tambaram), saw almost 25 private omni buses with various names waiting for passengers are about to come to Tambaram parking lot to pick up passengers, really didnt know so many Omni bus operators are existing.
From Irumbuliyur ROB there was a traffic jam, slowly crawled and reached the perungalathur bus stop by 9.20pm.
SETC nanjil chinnathambi was waiting what is its departure, Chendur travels was waiting, and lot of other Omni buses were waiting and blocking both service roads and main carriageway.
Many buses came and went, Jayavilas PeeTee coach, SBLT sleeper, TVLS odd looking irizar t9 coach bad looking, vivegam sleeper, Srm, Tippu sulthan NJK benz sleeper, Hebron to TVm was shouting for passengers.
My bus arrived at 9.50 pm, boarded the bus mentioning the seat number, my seat 29 was last but one row, 2 seats for myself and in the last row 1 person was there. THis bus is the 225 HP CRS with alloy wheels TN 74 AB 2070
Bus started around 9.55pm stopped at Vandalur Eraniamman temple, 2 persons got down for what reason not known then they came after 10 minutes and bus started.
At the Vandalur ROB the new Outer ring road one side ramp connection ( on the TBM CGL) is complete but traffic not allowed, on the Vandalur to Tambaram direction the ramp comes in to the BP petrol pump i suppose, lot of work is pending to complete.
Coming to the Journey first driver continued nonstop till short of Melur. Film Sivaji was on DVD, sound effects were similar to theatre DTS.
Second driver change and bio break was for 10 minutes, first driver was very fast, second driver as usual had the opposite driving style, i dont know why the pair of drivers are always of contrasting driving style, they come and make such a pair, or they purposefully perform in this fashion.
Reached tirunelveli around 5.30 am and lot of time was spent for luggage unloading.
THe passenger sitting on the other side of my row had his window open and coool breeze was blowing like anything, after madurai i went and closed his window.
THe last row person was snoring more than the silencer sound and somehow i couldnt sleep.
Went to Valliyur and dropped at Vadasery by 7.15 am. NJK has dropped passengers and was returning when we were approaching the bus stand. Bharathi was in the petrol pump at NGL for refuelling.
THe bus is showing the signs of age, there were too many rattling noise once the bus was almost empty at Tirunelveli, so much jarring sound from seats, overhead luggage rack. The seats need a complete wash they were looking so old and worn out look.
On the way before Trichy tippu sulthan had a puncture and they were attending to it, our bus stopped but tippu driver told us to proceed.
Return from Nagercoil was unfruitful experience, started at 12.30 Pm, reached Vadasery bus stand a NGL tirupur TNSTC MDU bus was there with colourful light Video and music, asked the conductor whether can i board for madurai, he told the bus will start at 1.45 pm.
A SETC nagercoil tirupathy UD was gathering passengers. i didnt take it it left around 12.50
At madurai bay only one TNSTC madurai division bus was there. hence boarded the bus and it started at 1 pm it was a TATA bus.
The bus went to all places between NGL nad Tirunelveli, 9Valliyur, Panagudi, Nanguneri) and reached Tirunelveli by 2.45pm. The SETC tirupathy was also there at tirunelveli.
At the TVELI madurai bay one TNSTC madurai TN 58 N2129 division bypass rider left then we entered the bay, the conductor now changed the board to MAdurai Bypass rider and next to us one more bypass rider was there and shouting for passengers, TN 58 N 2128
The timekeeper came and told the other conductor to keep quiet, as his bus had to start after us.
We started from Tirunelveli by 3 pm and i slept for sometime when i woke it was 4.50 and we have only reached Kovilpatti, meanwhile the other Bypass rider 2128 overtook us and went with good speed.
Our bus continued its journey never exceeding 64km, and took the Thirumangalam road, near to Airport petrol pump filled 112 litres diesel and entered Mattuthavani by 6.30 pm
At the ring road saw the SRM multi day service 6 pm first bus and by 6.30 pm the second bus (tirunelveli and udangudi day services)
On the thirumangalam petrol pump parveen snooze was taking rest.
In Madurai the Omni bus stand is very next to the MIBT. is this facility newly constructed or some area of the MIBT renamed as Omni bus stand.
In the ring road there totally 5 toll plazas, one toll plaza is next to MIBT on a road connecting to Nh45, i think the work is still going on but still toll collection is on, how come a toll collecting road in the city itself
All my expectation of southern speedster south bypass riders star performer nothing was to be seen. Painful journey of 5.50 hours to cover 240km distance, stopped at Kovilpatti, Sattur, Virudhunagar, Thirumangalam.
All other vehicles were zooming on the highway this bus driver will never press the accelerator pedal, i was fuming like anything.
At Madurai, one to one Trichy with all colourful lights was ready to depart, i thought this will go faster and boarded the bus, Namban movie was on, bus was full this was an AL from TNSTC Tirunelveli division (Tenkasi trichy i suppose) bus, this bus too had the same style of driving, never press the accelerator, the engine sound was not at all audible no hum no beat and reached trichy by 8.30 complete 2 hours for 124km journey with no stops, lukily no M restaurant halts in both cases.
In between 2 nos 170 Tuticorin to Chennai bus there on the highway, one 170 overtook us and we were both moving one behind the other, that bus took a halt at a restaurant and we moved on otherwise no action at all, here too other vehicles overtook us in a zipping fashion. Won't the driver get any feeling if a tata ace or a load auto casually overtakes his bus, still he will continue with the same old style of driving what a creature he is.
At trichy everyone was shouting for Madras, the TNSTC, SETC, and the Private bus brokers were calling for chennai.
SETC UD 1 to 1 was ready to depart, i asked him whether he will go via tambaram, then boarded the bus, gemini built 12m AN 112 registration, hard cushion seats like a rock it was, i had the last but 1 row total 43 seats and 10 rows. My seat didnt have the middle handrest, the next seat was not at all fastened with screw the cushion came away, bus was full and started after getting abuse from other TNSTC driver conductor at 9.35pm.
Conductor was a friendlier one, issued tickets and explained the passenger's queries calmly, my next seat person wanted to alight at SRM, conductor told since the last month accident of TNSTC bus at Guduvanchery Mgmt. has told them not to stop at other places where there is no bus stop, he told he will halt at Guduvanchery for him. he also mentioned the conductor had lost his legs in the accident.
After samayapuram all lights were off and i was slipping in to the sleep, then suddenly the conductor switched on all the cabin lights and came asking for tickets saying there is a passenger who didnt get a 200rs ticket from him, he has checked the count and found out he was asking and checking from us, finally one passenger from the front told he didnt get the 200rs ticket. The conductor would have pocketed the 200rs as he has collected the money and ticket( 235 rs issued 35 rs tickets only to that passenger), but he took the pain to hand over the ticket. Also he was telling all of us to have the tickets and hold it firmly as it may get flown due to wind. Handed over the change promptly and for others told he will get it from the motel and he promptly returned after the motel halt.
Soon after we left the Trichy bus stand while issuing the ticket one passenger told he hadn't got the water bottle nor he has taken food, the conductor told there is no good hotel or shop,, then told him he will stop at samayapuram toll plaza where the passenger can get something. true to his word the bus stopped after the toll plaza the condutor ran to the roadside shop got a biscuit packet, water bottle and came and gave it to the passenger.
This bus too was moving slowly, and reached chrompet at 3.30am. Before getting down after tambaram i was in the Driver's cabin and told him i need to alight at chrompet, observed his style of driving, he was sleepy and for every five minutes his eyes were closing automatically then he will shiver and make himself awake. Thought had a good day to reach here safe so far.