Clamp down on illegal busmen
THE EDITOR, Sir:
Please allow me space to bring to the fore a section of the transport sector which, although transporting the most vulnerable, has been allowed to get out of control. We transport students aged three to 17 years old.
I speak of contract school buses. Both the Transport Authority and the police used to regulate the industry and enforce the law, but over a four-year period, anything goes.
To be a legal operator, you must apply to the Transport Authority for a contract carrier's licence specifically to transport schoolchildren. If you are successful, your vehicle will be fitted with a public passenger (red) licence plate. To date, more than 60 per cent of these vehicles are illegal.
We are also concerned about the atrocities that take place while these children are transported. For more than four years, meetings with the Transport Authority have changed nothing. We have had two meetings with the children's advocate; as well as discussions with the police and the Road Safety Unit. Yet to date, things have remained the same.
Animals have rights. The police swear to serve and protect. So where are the rights for children travelling in illegal school buses? Don't wait for them to die to act.
Portmore, St Catherine