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Thursday, April 9, 2015

breakdown - thallu, thallu, thallu scene ! at Kamarajar Salai, Chennai !!

The city of Chennai bursts at seam with so much of traffic – there are so many vehicles on road – yet, you find people waiting (im)patiently in bus stops – all buses are overcrowded, more difficult when the routes are not served well and  the frequency is very low.  Passengers are inconvenienced and put to lots of hardship.

Once getting into the crowded bus, there could be occasions where the bus stops abruptly – ‘’breakdown’.  Vadivelu piece of passengers getting down to push the bus in Sneha, Shaam starrer ‘ABCD’ ~one man egging others ‘thallu, thallu, thallu’- but not participating at all made a hilarious comedy.  Certainly not for anyone involved in the breakdown – the physical act in sweltering heat is difficult, vehicle may not move and getting another bus and getting into it could be an herculean task. Somehow,  I have not seen a single breakdown in OMR in the past year or so ~have things improved drastically !  The push helps only when there is starting trouble or where the engine is suddenly cut off and the ignition is not working – there could be cases, where the vehicle suddenly comes to a standstill. 

A vehicle breakdown is the mechanical failure of a motor vehicle in such a way that the underlying problem prevents the vehicle from being operated at all, or impedes the vehicle's operation so much, that it is very difficult, nearly impossible, or else dangerous to operate. Vehicle breakdowns can occur for a large number of reasons. Depending on the nature of the problem, the vehicle may or may not need to be towed to an automobile repair shop.  One frequent cause for breakdown of buses is failure in  transmission system. Due to frequent changing of gears and use of clutch and breaks, the wear and tear in these areas is greater in buses that ply amidst busy traffic – it is explained.

A total breakdown is when the vehicle becomes totally immobile and cannot be driven even a short distance to reach a repair shop, thereby necessitating a tow – and when the vehicle so stops in between, in the middle of a road !..... each time a vehicle breaksdown in a narrow lane, it creates traffic-jam – vehicles pile up, people become irate and there is total confusion !!

~this morning in the busy Kamarajar Salai [Beach Road] saw a lorry carrying timber stopped in the middle due to breakdown.  Vehicles generally ply fast on this road – most of the drivers did spot the vehicle stranded in the middle, yet some never chose to reduce the speed – and as could be seen in one of the photos – a MTC bus chose to go through the narrow left gap, followed by another car; a two wheeler passed by just closer on its right, while a tourist taxi chose to speed by crossing the yellow lane travelling on the lane for oncoming vehicles; another van without battling an ink, overtook at a great speed literally driving on the extreme right hand corner.

The driver and cleaner of the vehicle were nonchalant, just remaining talking to each other.  When asked, the driver said, the vehicle can be pushed to a corner – could mobilise only 4 people – who at the very instance were not prepared to believe that it can happen. So, there was yours truly and 4 others trying to push the vehicle ‘thallu, thallu, thallu’ – the othermen proved wiser – the vehicle fully laden with perhaps more than 12 tons of timber would not move an inch. Every one gave up instantaneously realising the futility – perhaps a group of 20 or so, would have had some success – not sure though !

Before you think that such things happen only here – here is a photo taken from Daily Mail UK showing a double-becker being pushed at Dover, UK.  Seemingly, the 4 odd persons appear to push the bus so easily !!

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

9th Apr 2015.

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