It is one of the most frequented places in Torrevieja. Every day hundreds of travellers pass through the bus station using it as a starting, finishing or transit point for their journeys. And judging from a report issued recently by The Prosecutors Office, it is also one of the most neglected.
For many people this is the first sight they get of Torrevieja, a run-down area that is frequented by drug dealers, down and outs and criminals, not the impression that politicians want to portray.
Many health and safety aspects relating to the bus station are completely unacceptable. The side accesses to the site sees a regular flow of traffic intermingled with pedestrians. At the main entrance to the station, access is also a lottery, where the only transit space is occupied by tables and chairs from the cafeteria.
Information is non-existent as are announcements over the public address system. Travellers have to rely on the ticket office where, if there is a queue, finding anything out can be impossible.
The shortcomings for people with disabilities are colossal. Public services are completely inaccessible to people with disabilities, both by the width of the doors and by the steps that also prevent access. If you are brave enough to use the toilet facilities you will quickly find just how bad and how unsanitary they are.
In terms of security, the problems are even more alarming. There is a lack of surveillance and security personnel. The consumption of alcohol in areas of heavy traffic is not only habitual but is also encouraged by the sale of alcoholic beverages from a shop that is directly connected to the site.
There are broken locks on the toilet door which serve as a warning of a hostile and undesirable place that it is, where drug addicts regularly gather to make their fix, or adults unashamedly have sexual relations. The graffiti on the walls and the doors is disgusting, especially for any children find it necessary to use the services.
And all this goes on, and has done for years and years, just 50 yards away, and in clear sight of the barracks of the Guardia Civil and the Torrevieja Courts of Justice.
The complaints, which were presented on 8th November, and which were documented in detail with photographs and a video, have already resulted in improved signage and security for users. The signs now warn of the danger of pickpockets, they also prohibit the consumption of alcohol and warn of the “extreme danger” for pedestrian who choose to move around in areas that are designated for use by the buses. There is also video surveillance we are told, but information suggests that the system is not operational.
Many people say that the report is long overdue. The bus station has always been a dangerous centre with many illicit and unsavoury activities regularly taking place. As the gateway to Torrevieja, the station, it’s facilities and its procedures are badly in need of a complete overhaul if people are to feel safe and be encouraged to use the services once again.