T&HD performed exceptionally well in 2023 – Min. Edghill

The Transport and Harbours Department (T&HD) performed exceptionally well in 2023 and saw a remarkable surge in its operational metrics.

This is according to the Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill on Friday.

He was at the time highlighting the T&HD’s performance while debunking misconceptions and shedding light on its diverse and bustling activities, during the ministry’s year-end press conference.

Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill alongside various department heads of the Ministry

The statistics reveal an impressive movement of vehicles, which saw 106,627 vehicles traversing various T&HD routes.

Further, he underscored the comparison drawn to water taxis plying these routes, which account for 481,648 vehicles, marking a significant portion of the transportation landscape.

“These numbers should cause us to reflect that the service of the Transport and Harbours Department is not just an old service that some old people use. So, this is very interesting and we appreciate the hard work that the people at transport and harbours are putting in,” he emphasised.

The T&HD also played a pivotal role in cargo movement, facilitating the transportation of a substantial 195,623 tonnes of cargo.

The minister noted that this aspect underscores the department’s significance beyond passenger transit, contributing significantly to the logistics and trade sectors.

Similarly, the Essequibo route saw substantial activity in 2023.

The T&HD recorded that some 472,723 passengers, 106,397 vehicles, and 182,55 tonnes of cargo traversed the Essequibo.

Additionally, the minister underscored that despite incidents that made headlines, the Demerara Harbour Bridge saw 97 per cent of its retractions for marine traffic occur during the nights.

This strategic scheduling ensures minimal disruption during peak traffic hours while maintaining a high level of service, a testament to efficient management and collaboration with stakeholders.

Moreover, the bridge has seen an 8 per cent increase in ocean-going vessels and an impressive 86.9 per cent increase in tug and barges.

Minister Edghill also underscored that as of November 2023, an astounding 8,348,322 vehicles have crossed the bridge in both directions, marking a substantial 28 per cent increase over 2022.

“I am sure we are thinking we badly need the new Demerara River Bridge which will be a four-lane bridge that will see improvement of how people can get in and out,” he said.

Meanwhile, the North West operations since the introduction of the MV MA Lisha have improved significantly with the shift from monthly to fortnightly services in 2020 to a commendable weekly service, and recently even two boats operating on the same day.

In a display of dedication to enhancing accessibility and frequency of transport services to underserved regions, the minister said “That is what we are continually seeking to do with our service at the transport and harbour department”.