Clarifying seating rules for May Pen taxis
THE EDITOR, Sir:
The Transport Authority is moving to clarify issues as they pertain to the seating capacity of public passenger vehicles operated by transport operators in the May Pen area. To this end, a meeting was held involving chairman of the Transport Authority, Norton Hinds; Managing Director Donald Foster; MP for Central Clarendon Mike Henry; director of the Island Traffic Authority (ITA), Ludlow Powell; chief inspector of the ITA, Clive McDonald; as well as members of the May Pen Taxi Association and other staff members of the Authority.
The clarification comes against a background where several PPV operators in the May Pen area complained that there was a disparity in the number of persons transported by some vehicles as opposed to others. The operators said that some station wagon cars were transporting five persons, inclusive of the driver, while others were transporting seven, inclusive of the driver.
In seeking to clarify the matter, the chairman of the Authority said that those vehicles with a seating capacity of seven as prescribed by the terms and conditions of their licenses will continue to enjoy that privilege. However, he said moving forward, new vehicles coming into the system will be authorised to carry five persons.
Meanwhile, MP Henry says he would be writing to Transport Minister Omar Davies with a view to having all vehicles transporting the same number of persons, since he says there is no justification for a reduction from seven to five. This, even after director of the Island Traffic Authority, Ludlow Powell, says the move to decrease the seating capacity was one that was being driven by safety concerns for the travelling public.