Transit Headaches As Bus Drivers Strike

By bogotapost October 22, 2014

PRIVATE BUS transport in Bogota came to a standstill on Monday, as small bus owners went on strike to vent their anger at the new ‘pico y placa’ road regulations.

The bus drivers said they will strike for as long as it takes to get the new regulations repealed, reports said.

The strike, undertaken by owners of small buses known as ‘busetas’, meant that thousands of the vehicles were nowhere to be seen on October 20. This caused transport chaos in the capital, as a good number of Bogotanos depend on the buses for their daily commute. As a result of the lack of buses, the city’s Transmilenio system was overwhelmed, reports said.

Drivers are protesting the ‘pico y placa’ law that requires buses to only operate on certain days based on the last digit on their license plates. The aim of this law is to reduce traffic congestion and encourage the use of the public SITP bus system. Operators of private buses say the measure violates their right to work.

In a related development, officials said that, as of Wednesday, October 22, the Transmilenio fare would rise by 100 pesos to 1,800 pesos during peak hours.

See our contributor’s take on the Transmilenio fare hike here.

By Steven Gratten