STATE BUDGET COVERAGE
A bus service which transports late-night pub-goers from Traralgon’s nightclub precinct to neighbouring towns has been funded for another year.
The State Government decision to extend the ‘night rider’ bus program has delighted the town’s safety committee which has pushed for a more permanent service.
“In terms of policing, it means people are able to get out of town more readily when the taxi system may be overloaded, rather than congregating in the streets,” Traralgon CBD Safety Committee member Sergeant Paul Stow said.
As well as reducing anti-social behaviour, the bus service aims to deter people from drink driving.
“It means they get home in a safe manner. A lot of people we do catch over .05 in the area say they’re coming into town to pick up friends (from the nightclub district),” Sgt Stow said.
The bus was trialled in 2009 but failed to attract permanent funding.
It was revived in June last year following a pre-election commitment by State Member for Morwell Russell Northe as a year-long trial with the possibility of longer-term funding depending on its popularity.
The service has now been secured for the next financial year as part of the state budget.
For a regular fee, the bus departs the Franklin Street terminal on Sundays at 2.30am and 4.30am for Morwell and Moe residents and 3.30am for Churchill residents.
The night rider is monitored by security guards.