Social Studies

Meaning of Transportation, Means and Modes of Transportation

Olawunmi Omosanya - Fri, 22nd March, 2019 @ 17:06: PM

Meaning of Transportation:

Transportation can be defined as the movement of goods, persons and animals from one point to another by various means.

Note: Means of transportation is different from mode of transportation.

The mode of transportation refers to the medium in or on which the movement or means of transportation occur. For instance, land is a mode of transportation and it's means can be a car or a lorry.

The means of transportation simple imply the object through which transportation is achieved. For instance, cars and aeroplanes are means of transportation. In the ancient times, the major means of transportation was by foot, but presently, Nigeria as a country has grown to have different means of transportation.


Modes of transportation

As stated ealier, they refer to the medium in or on which transportation movement occur. They include the followings:

(A) Land Transportation

They are majorly put into two types:

1. Road transportation: Means of transportation like cars, motorcycles, bicycles, lorries, buses and trucks all utilize the road as their mode of transport.  They are the most prone to accident when compared to other means of transport. Generally, roads can be put into 3 types. They are:

  • Trunk A Road: These are roads constructed by the federal government. E.g The Lagos-Ibadan road in Nigeria.
  • Trunk B Road: They are constructed and maintained by the state government. E.g The Lasu-Igando road in Lagos.
  • Trunk C Road: They are minor roads maintained by the various local governments.


2. Rail Transportation: Trains are the means of transportation here. They can convey a large number of people and goods. The first rail lines in Nigeria were constructed between 1890 - 1930. It's length is about 3,500 kilometers and was primarily built for agricultural purpose during that time. Nowadays, trains can be very fast and can also travel between different countries. They are the least prone to accident amongst all the means of transportation.


(B) Water Transportation

Water bodies involved in transportation are the oceans, seas and the inland water ways. Inland water ways are the rivers, lakes, lagoons and canals. Lagos, Portharcourt, Delta and Calabar all have their respective ports where products from ocean transport may be brought into the country, making it ideal for international trade and very bulky goods movement. Accidents are not very rampant on this mode of transport. The means of water mode of transportation are ship, canoe, yatch, boat, speedboat and ferry.


(C) Air Transportation

With regards to comfort and speed, this is the most efficient and fastest mode of transportation. Aeroplanes, helicopter, jets and spaceships utilize air as means of transportation. Although expensive, this means of transport is very crucial internationally. It is not as prone to accidents when compared to road transport.


(D) Pipelines

This mode of transportation convey liquid and gaseous products for one point to another, within or outside a country. Pipeline vanderlization has been a major problem in Nigeria because this mode of transport aids in generating most of the Nation's income. Accident from gas pipelines can be devastating, additionally causing damage to land and sea organisms.


(E) Human Porterage

This is an ancient mode of transportation. The use of animals such as donkeys, mules and camels aided as the means of transportation at that time. They helped to convey goods and persons from one point to another.

Please read on the Advantages and Disadvantages of Land mode of transportation here

You can read on the Advantages and Disadvantages of Water and Air modes of transportation here

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