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Falmouth operators shun transport centre

Published:Monday | February 6, 2017 | 12:00 AMLeon Jackson

Stakeholders in Falmouth have expressed concern that wayward transport operators in Falmouth have been taking advantage of the fact that the Falmouth Transport Centre has not been gazetted to avoid using the facility and instead use the streets of the town to pick up passengers.

The two main petrol stations in the town are severely affected by this practice. In the case of Rubis, in the vicinity of the market, operators plying six different routes use the compound for a transport centre. One senior worker, who requested anonymity, expressed frustration with the situation.

"I have a two-edged sword in my hand. I want them to patronise my business, but at the same time, there is an ever-present danger hanging over Falmouth. They park on the gas oil pump and solicit passengers, smoke, use their telephones despite warnings posted about the dangers," the manager said.

He said that passengers are also guilty of the dangerous practices.

"It is total lawlessness and disrespect. My displays cannot be seen, especially on Ben' Down Market days. The whole compound is taken over. Any effort to establish order is met with miles of Jamaican clothing and threats," he stated.

At the nearby Total gas station, operator Richard Shirley says that he is faced with a similar situation, although not to as large an extent as his competitor.

"Drivers who want to purchase petrol have, to from time to time, beg taxi operators to move so they can get to the pump. If I drive out, when I come back, I have to beg for parking space in my own business. It is frustrating, and neither the police are doing anything about it, and the Municipal Corporation seems incapable of getting matters right," said Shirley, whose family has been operating that kind of business for over 40 years.