The approaching Christmas and New Year holidays often bring a surge in traffic, leading to tiring congestion for travelers. In preparation for this, Police Chief Listyo Sigit Prabowo has outlined measures to manage the situation during the 2023/2024 holiday season. These include implementing traffic solutions like contraflow and one-way systems.
Listyo highlighted the expectation of around 107.6 million movements of people during the Christmas and New Year period, known as nataru. To address this, the National Police (Polri) has organized security operations, including Operation Lilin, which will involve 129,923 personnel from both the Indonesian National Army (TNI) and the Police, running from December 20 to January 2.
Anticipating two peak periods of return traffic, Listyo explained the application of traffic engineering measures, stating, “We expect there will be two peak periods of the return flow and the departure flow, namely before Christmas and before New Year’s Eve. Of course, we will implement traffic engineering, ranging from contraflow regulation to one-way. We already have a traffic counting formula that we tried during the Eid al Fitr holiday.”
Contraflow involves altering the direction of traffic on certain lanes to facilitate smoother movement during high traffic periods, especially holidays.
Moreover, the implementation of a one-way traffic system is seen as an effective solution to alleviate congestion on broader roads. By restricting traffic to a single direction on specific road segments, the risk of congestion and density can be minimized. This approach also aids in more efficient traffic distribution, ensuring smooth travel for commuters.
Regarding the security of Christmas worship, police personnel are set to sterilize places of worship and ensure the smooth distribution of basic necessities and fuel, particularly in congested areas. Listyo mentioned, “Hence, the police, together with Pertamina colleagues, have prepared a special task force.”
Listyo acknowledged the overlap of Christmas and New Year celebrations with the campaign period for the 2024 Presidential Election. In light of this, he is taking precautions to manage public movement to avoid intersecting with campaign activities. “I believe the police have prepared Operation Mantap Brata related to the campaign series. However, we see movement from the public possibly going to locations that are campaign gathering places that also intersect with the homecoming routes. Therefore, we must manage it properly to avoid intersections.”
Innovative traffic solutions, including contraflow and one-way systems, offer effective strategies to address congestion during the Christmas and New Year holidays. Combining physical interventions with modern technology, the government aims to create a more efficient transportation system, providing a better travel experience for the public. These measures underscore a commitment to finding contemporary and sustainable solutions for addressing future traffic challenges.