HIS experience last Tuesday prompted Ivon Premacio, 39, to leave his house in Cordova, Cebu three hours before his daily training as a seaman in Cebu City.
He didn’t want to go through what he went through the other day when he waited hours to buy a ticket for the ferry crossing from the Muelle Osmeña Wharf in Barangay Poblacion, Lapu-Lapu City to Pier 3 across the Mactan Channel.
But it turned out that there was no need to be so early. The resident of Barangay Buagsong was able to secure a ticket without a problem yesterday.
The two-day “horrendous” traffic on the Marcelo B. Fernan Bridge from Lapu-Lapu City to Mandaue City was because of the rehabilitation of the Mandaue-Mactan Bridge.
Due to repairs, only one lane of the first bridge was open to traffic: for vehicles going to Mactan Island.
Mandaue-bound vehicles had to use the second bridge.
Last Tuesday morning, vehicles on U.N. Ave. could hardly move due to traffic. It was the first day of classes and work after a long weekend.
As a result, residents in Lapu-Lapu took the ferry.
PO1 Junrey Terana of the Tourist Police of Lapu-Lapu said the line for the ticket reached the church, or a few meters from the wharf.
“We experienced that volume of ferry passengers only during Sinulog and the holidays. The number of passengers became normal after both lanes of the first bridge were opened to traffic,” he said in Cebuano.
Last Tuesday, Premacio’s training was supposed to start at 7 a.m. but he was late.
His usual one-hour travel time to Cebu City doubled to two hours.
“Mas maayo unta dunay solution (It would be better if they find a solution) like additional five ferries (especially when bridge repairs happen),” he said.
“Ang mga dagko nga naglingkod wa’y proper planu. Although nag-expect sila dunay congestion pero wa sila mag-anticipate nga ingon ani ang mahitabo (The government did not have a proper plan. Although they expected traffic congestion, they did not anticipate that this would happen to the commuters),” he said.
Arthur Aranda, captain of ferry boat Tommy 1, said passengers last Tuesday went up from 2,000 to 3,000.
He said they made 22 round trips, with the ferry accommodating 120 passengers per trip.
Also yesterday, Regine Solon, 28, a resident of T. Padilla, Cebu City, hopped on boar a ferry from Cebu City to Lapu-Lapu to visit the church of Our Lady of the Rule.
“Pabor ko sa ferry. Di ko ganahan og traffic (I prefer the ferry. I do not want to get stuck in traffic),” Solon said.