Transport is the movement of goods and people from one place to another. People can move to different places to find their needs such as production activities, conducting trade activities, studying and for tourism activities.
Types of Transportation
There are three common types of transport, they include;
- Land transport
- Air transport
- Water transport
- Land transport
This type of transport involves the movement of goods and people on the land surface. The major means of Transport on land include the following;
- Human transport
Human transport is the oldest form of transport in the world, however, it is still common means of transport in the world today.
Human transport is whereby people carry light goods from one place to another. They carry the goods on their heads, backs, shoulders and holding them in their hands.
Sometimes they can use wheelbarrows; handcarts trolleys for ease of movement. Human transport is common in areas where others form of transport cannot be used eg crowded
Commercial human transport where people called porters is paid to carry goods in less developed countries.
Advantages of Human transport
Disadvantage of Human transport
- It is a means of transport that is reality available whenever it is needed.
- It is very cheap and affordable means of transport
- It is safe than road, air or water transport,
- It is flexible, it can be used to transport goods to various places.
- It complements another mean of transport like road
- Human transport does not pollute the environment
2. Animal transport
- Compare to other means of transport it is slow
- It cannot be used to carry heavy or bulky goods
- It depends on a person remaining physical strong and wealthy.
Goods and people are sometimes moved from one place to another by the use of animals. This means of transport is mostly used in areas where another form of transport cannot be used, however, it can be used alongside with human transport, for example in desert and mountainous areas. The animals used include camels, horses, elephants, donkeys, cows, and dogs. Animals that carry goods on their back are referred to as Pack animals whereas those that pull carts are referred to as draught animals.
NB; Animal transport has the same advantage and disadvantages as human transport.
3. Road transport
This means of transport is the most common on land and reaches even in remote areas. Road transport involves the use of various types of vehicles, motorcycle, and bicycles. There are different types of roads classified according to their quality;
All weather roads – These are the roads which are used throughout the year even when it rains.
Dry weather roads – These are the roads which are suitable during dry seasons only because when it rains they are impossible to be used.
Motorable trucks roads these are small feeder roads used by people in vehicles and on motorcycles and bicycles during dry seasons.
-Roads are owned and constructed by the local or central government. This can be seen in the fact that the highly developed nations in the world have the best road networks.
Advantages of Road Transport
Disadvantages of road transport
- In road transport, many different types of vehicles, as well as motorcycles and bicycles, can be used.
- Road transport is quite flexible
- It is faster than human and animal transport
- Construction and maintenance of roads are relatively cheaper than that of railways.
- It can be constructed, developed or maintained while they continue being used.
- It complements other means of transport like air, railways or water transport.
- Allow the transportation of small amounts of goods at relatively low costs.
4. Railway transport
- They can be easily affected by weather condition.
- They lose their convenience over the long distance.
- Goods being transported by road, there is a risk of being stolen by criminals.
- They have the risk of occurrence of accidents.
- They contribute to air pollution.
- Road transport often suffers congestion problem.
This means of transport involves moving goods and people from one place to another by the use of trains on rails. The development of railways was meant to promote agriculture and individual industrial activities especially as it enabled easy transportation of raw materials and finished products. The TAZARA railway running from Dar es Salaam to the Zambia
Advantages of Railways Transport
Disadvantages of railways transport
- It has the capacity to carry both heavy and bulky goods as well as many passengers over long distances.
- It is relatively cheaper.
- The effects of weather condition on railways transport are low compared to the road transport.
- Maintenance costs are low and not frequently
- It saves transport compared to road transport especially in the risk of occurrence of accidents.
- Railways lines operate according to time schedule
5. Pipelines transport
- Construction of railways is expensive and take a long period of time, unlike road construction.
- Railway transport is expensive for the transportation of goods and people over short distances.
- Railway transport is not flexible compared to other means of transport.
Pipeline transport involves the movement of fluids that is liquids and gases from one place to another through pipes. Such liquids and gases include oil, water, sewage and natural gases.
Advantages of Pipeline transport
Disadvantages of Pipeline transport
- It does not pollute the environment
- Accidents and theft are reduced compared to other types of transport such as roads and trains.
- This form of transport cannot be affected by congestion and therefore it is a fast means of transporting fluids.
- It is not affected by weather condition.
- It complements another form of transport
- Pipelines can be laid on land, underground and underwater and making the pipeline transport flexible.
(b) Air Transport
- Pipeline are expensive to develop.
- They can only transport fluids
- Without proper and continued supervision and maintenance leakages can occur.
- Pipelines are inflexible when it comes to delivering of products such as petroleum to the end user.
This is the movement of goods and people from one place to another through the use of airplanes. They involve the use of aircrafts such as airplanes, helicopters, and hot air balloons. It is the most modern and fastest means of transport globally. There are two types of air transport such as;
(a) Domestic air transport
They involve the movement of people and goods within a country for different purposes.
(b) International air transport
They involve the movement of people and goods from one country to another. Air transport is not very well developed in many developing countries because of the high cost of setting up, operating and maintaining it.
There are many internal airports and several local airports and airstrips in East Africa. The international airports include;
-Nyerere International airport in Dar es Salaam
-Kilimanjaro International airport in Arusha
Jomo Kenyatta International airport in Nairobi
Eldoret International airport in Kenya
Entebbe International airport in Uganda
Advantages of airport transport
Disadvantages of air transport
- Air transport is fastest and so it is suitable for transportation of perishable goods, sick people, and animals.
- Air transport is not affected by physical barriers like mountains, rivers, and lakes.
- Travelling by air is comfortable especially over long distance.
- Air transport is flexible as routes and planes can be changed when the need arises.
- Air transport uses strictly time schedules enabling travelers to plan their journeys well.
- It has a higher level of security and safety.
© Water Transport
- Air transport is heavy affected by weather climatic conditions.
- Air transport is so expensive.
- In case of accidents, a lot of damage and loss are experienced.
- The personnel working in the air transport sector need to be well trained.
- Due to its limited spaces for carrying goods, it is not suitable for transportation of bulky and heavy goods over a long distance.
This is the movement of goods and people from one place to another on water by using water vessels such as boats. There are two categories of water transport;
- Inland water transport
- Ocean/ sea water transport
*Inland water transport; involves the movement of people and goods over inland water bodies such as rivers, lakes, and canals.
*Sea transport involves the movement of people and goods over the oceans and seas.
Although water transport is low, it is one of the cheaper and most suitable means of transporting heavy and bulky goods over a long distance especially raw materials.
Most inland water transport takes place in lakes navigable rivers and canals.
Most of them are only navigable through some sections of their course and not through their whole length, for example, Nile Rivers, Congo River, Niger and Groove in Gabon
Advantages of Water transport
Disadvantages of Water Transport
- Water transport is the most suitable means of transporting heavy and bulky goods over long distance
- There is the minimal cost of construction in this means of transport
- There is minimal congestion in water transport
Importance of Transport industry in East Africa
- Water transport is greatly affected by changes in climatic conditions
- Water transport is limited, favorable to areas adjacent to water bodies.
- Modern shipping vessels are expensive.
- Water transport is one of the slowest means of transport.
Problems facing the Transport industry in East Africa
- A source of employment
- Enhance trade activities
- Promotes unity and understanding
- Enable exploitation of natural resources.
- Encourages development of other industries.
- Facilitates the development of settlement
- Enable easy movement of people to their places
Measures Taken to address the problems of the Transport industry in Tanzania
- Lack of Capital
- Lack of Skilled labor
- Rising fuel costs
- Political problem
- Countries with the scarcity of land and water bodies do not have access to use other means of transport such as Water transport.
- There are few navigable lakes and rivers in East Africa
- Most of the land in East Africa is under thick vegetations.
- Intensified revenue collection so as to obtain capital from Transportation activities.
- Development of manpower in various fields of transport and communication
- Formulation of policies and laws that promotes the growth of the transport industry.