“More than one million people in Scotland live in areas at risk of ‘transport poverty'”, according to a new study by SESTRANS.

scotrail
Pictured: the return ticket options for people wishing to get from Dundee to Glasgow in time for work. A totally justifiable cost for a sub-standard rail service that will probably run late, with no guarantee of seat availability. The First Class option, at double the price, enables commuters to sit “just a bit further up” from the commoners in the carriage.

Scotland, a country that once built locomotives and ships for countries around the world (literally giving the world transport vehicles), is now living in transport poverty where the average Joe can’t afford to use the “public” transport options.

In a stunning revelation from SESTRANS, it’s become apparent that the average commuter can’t afford the daily £45 return ticket fare from Dundee to Glasgow on a train, or the additional 30 minutes in journey duration compared with a car drive that it would entail.

Oddly, the prospect of spending the equivalent cost of a tank of fuel in a car that would provide 500 miles of travel, every day, and be squashed into a dirty, overcrowded metal tube that will probably run late, is insufficient enticement for people to leave their cars at home and use public transport.

A Scotrail spokesperson was unwilling to comment on allegations that rail fares were “daylight robbery” and “totally unjustified over-inflated nonsense” and that whoever was in charge of setting fares was “a complete and utter buffoon who is more interested in profit than running a usable service for its customers”, simply choosing instead to blow his nose with a £100 note.

Transport Scotland and SESTRANS are just baffled by this. Aiming to encourage people to reduce carbon emissions by using public transport and/or cycling, a spokesman for Transport Scotland said they could just not understand how attitudes were not changing.

“We are doing the very minimum we can to change attitudes to public transport, and people aren’t getting on board. So what if the price of a return train ticket from Dundee to Glasgow could pay for the entire trip in a car, parking for the day, lunch and probably dinner and a cinema ticket too? That’s not the point.”

Other organisations like NCP and Edinburgh Airport have done their bit to discourage private car usage, such as demanding major organs as payment for parking in Scotland’s cities. City councils are also doing their part by conducting multiple inner-city road repairs at the same time to limit traffic flow.

Buses offer a slightly more sensible option in Edinburgh and Glasgow, wherein there is literally a bus for every conceivable route, but city-dwellers don’t understand why rural residents don’t ejaculate with excitement over their 1/2 a bus per day options.

Transport minister Humza Yousaf was quick to point out that Fifers can now get across the River Forth marginally faster now that the old Forth Road Bridge is dedicated to buses, meaning that once the bus has made it through the 4 years of traffic queues on either shore, they can cross the bridge in relative leisure.

“Never mind the fact that we cancelled the Glasgow Airport rail link or decided against making a connection from the East Coast Rail link to the Edinburgh – Glasgow line. Those were expensive pet projects that would never catch on. We’ve built a brand new 2-lane bridge over the Forth and now that buses will go over a separate bridge this will make life much better for everyone.”

Mr Yousaf was quick to point out that in 20 years’ time people will be able to drive all the way up the A9 on a dual carriageway, and that people would be encouraged to buy electric cars for the journey with the “6 charging points” located on the route.

Strangely, many people are unwilling to cycle in Scotland, citing a lack of safe conditions of the many country roads with blind bends, the lack of usable cycling infrastructure and the need to book your bike onto a train as a handful of reasons for feeling discouraged.

However, a number of Edinburgh and St Andrews cyclists, including Deliveroo staff, said that they were very keen to cycle but felt that there were too many restrictions on cycling such as “obeying basic traffic rules”, “needing to be visible at night time”, “not having the total freedom to cycle wherever and however the wished as they felt it should be” and that “the Edinburgh tram tracks were built intentionally to trap and kill cyclists, even though millions of cyclists in tram-laden European cities around the world manage just fine”.

 

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