Thanks to a massive jam on the highway this morning, SK was late for school. This is the first time in his entire school life that he's been late! And it wasn't even our fault. When he arrived, the school gate was closed and everyone inside was standing still while the national anthem was being played.
I heard (over the radio) the jam was due to flooding on the highway. We've just had the driest month in 10 years. There's not a single drop of rain all week, so I wonder where the flood water came from. I suspect it was a burst pipe.
Anyway, while we were stuck in the jam, I looked around and thought it was ridiculous to have this huge amount of cars on the road at 6.35am. I don't remember seeing so many cars in the morning until the ERP gantry was installed at Eunos recently. It's definitely too early for the office crowd and not everyone was sending their kid to school. But why the heavy traffic?
I can only deduce that people are leaving their house earlier to avoid paying hefty ERP charges. From 7am to 7.30am, the rates are $1 for cars and $2 for trucks. There were so many trucks around me today. Everyone's in a cost cutting mode. Saving $2 a day can amount to quite a decent sum every month. Don't forget, the Eunos gantry is only the first one on this highway (towards Jurong). There are many more to go through after this. It's easy to lose count on how much you've spent.
Still, I wonder how effective the ERP system is in solving traffic congestion. Sure, the traffic is smoother when ERP is in operation but the jams start earlier. So, what's the point here?
This morning, everyone stuck in the traffic ended up paying ERP charges despite leaving the house at an ungodly hour. Our 15-minute journey stretched to 45 minutes. I hope it doesn't happen too often!