JUTC expands fleet
The Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) has acquired 26 additional buses, to bring its complement to 469.
In a handover ceremony at the Twickenham Park Depot, St Catherine, on Thursday, the state bus company's managing director, Colin Campbell, indicate that 16 of the Volvo buses will go directly into the city service, while 10 will added to the newly formed Euro Luxury Group.
"This is a good that we are growing, as last year of our 445 units we have a 99% turn out daily, so we are growing to attain First World standards," Campbell said.
He added that with the fleet being renewed, fuel efficiency has increased. The buses cost approximately €$300,000 each.
Minister of transport and works, Dr Omar Davies, said the buses are a great addition to the public transportation system. He gave a word of warning to Belgium Ambassador to Jamaica Guy Servin, who was in attendance.
"I have requested that each driver gets a log book, to deal with the performance of the buses," Davies said. "If there are others who can provide good quality buses at a cheaper rate, then I owe it to the Jamaican people ... . With our great record of payment it is only fair, we negotiate."
He also implored the JUTC employees to see their job as an important career, and not just 'hustling'.
JUTC chairman, Dr Garnet Roper, said that with Belgium selling Jamaica buses for years, "I think the time has come for us to sell something to Belgium. It would only be fair trade, not just free trade."
Roper said Jamaica should be equipped to fully maintain and even assemble the units.
Norton Hinds of the Transport Authority said even as the JUTC increases its fleet the problem of unregulated transport operators is negatively affecting the industry. "We are working with the police to deal with a zero tolerance approach, " Hinds said.