Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Careless JUTC drivers could be fired

Published:Sunday | April 17, 2016 | 4:00 AMRyon Jones
A policeman stands in front of a crashed Jamaica Urban Transit Company bus on Orange Street in downtown Kingston.

The Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) Limited has set out guidelines on how it will deal with drivers involved in accidents and other incidents on the road.

Some 846 JUTC drivers were involved in at least 1,997 accidents between 2014 and 2015, but not on all occasions were they at fault.

Under the JUTC's 2007 Traffic Accident/Incident Practices and Procedures, drivers involved in accidents and incidents resulting in serious injury or loss of life should be initially removed from duty with full pay.

Once the company has laid a charge against the driver they will be interdicted on half pay until the hearing is resolved. A charge ought to be laid against the driver within 15 working days of the accident or incident.

For those drivers who are charged the half pay, interdiction will remain in effect pending the completion of the hearing into the charge, which should be concluded within a maximum of 21 working days from the day the charge is laid.

Restoration of pay from the time of the interdiction will be effected if the driver is found not to be at fault.

FIRST TIME OFFENDER

But drivers found to be at fault on two occasions for accidents and incidents resulting in damages with repairs exceeding $150,000 will be dismissed.

First-time offenders face suspension without pay for a period of seven to 21 days and are required to pay the cost of repairs to the JUTC vehicle, but not exceeding two weeks contracted gross salary.

Before resumption from suspension, drivers must present proof that they successfully completed the approved driver retraining programme.

Drivers found to be at fault for three accidents or incidents resulting in damages to buses with repairs costing up to $150,000 within a two-year period could also face dismissal.

Those deemed to be responsible for two such accidents or incidents will be required to pay the cost to repair the JUTC vehicle.

Drivers found culpable on the first occasion in accidents and incidents resulting in damages costing $150,000 or less to JUTC buses are required to pay the cost of repairs to the JUTC vehicle, not exceeding two weeks contracted gross salary.