In a recent trip to Shanghai, looking at the electric trolley bus, I couldn't help but reminsced my young days (as a kid) when the STC (Singapore Traction Company) used to run the electric trolley buses in town. It was a noiseless bus that was slow and sometimes caused traffic jams because of problems with the bus. It ran on fixed routes dictated by the overhead electric wires. It had an interesting jerk as it picked up speed. I could only remember the route at Tanjong Pagar Road near to the Craig Road junction, where there was a big mess of wires being stretched across the street.
While Singapore did away with the electric trolley buses, many countries did not. When we looked back, we realised that the electric trolley bus was indeed ahead of time! At least from the pollution point of view. Of course, the messy overhead wires and constant arcing of the wires with the trolleys seemed to cause concern. To my children, it was the first time they were looking at the electric trolley buses and had not ideas that they were once upon a time, a mode of transport in Singapore!
The only regret was we did not get a chance to try the electric trolley bus in Shanghai.
[Pictures of electric trolley bus and overhead wires taken in Shanghai, December, 2006]