Training institutes in the City for private bus drivers need to be made a reality
Bus accidents have become common these days. After every bus accident we extend our heartfelt condolences to the victims and their families, blame the driver and soon forget about the incident till another accident occurs.
Most of the accidents are caused due to the driver’s negligence and careless attitude. Postnoon checked with some retired bus drivers and conductors to find out what could be the possible reason behind these gruesome accidents and who should be held responsible for the growing number of accidents.
It is a well known fact that once the driver of any private bus takes his seat and crosses the City limits the first thing in his mind is to reach the destination in the shortest period of time. In such an instance, safety and security take a backseat.
“In most accident cases, the main culprit is the driver. Many a times just to earn extra money drivers undertake overnight journeys. The driver is the one who takes you to the destination and also brings you back. In turn he gets very less time to sleep or relax. To overcome the tiredness most of the drivers opt for alcohol without realising the fact that it will only result in accidents,” said a retired bus driver who didn’t want to be named.Once the bus crosses the City limits or the last check post the operators close the curtains of the windows and make sure the lights are also switched off and a movie is played for the passengers.
“The closed windows and movie are done on purpose by the operators so that the passengers do not realise how fast the bus is travelling. All these buses have super suspension system so even if the vehicle is going beyond its speed limit you won’t even realise. This careless attitude of drivers gives rise to tragedies and ghastly accidents,” adds the driver.Most of these buses are driven at speeds ranging between 130 kmph to 140 kmph. One more main reason is the absence of a second driver.
It is mandatory that every bus operator should have minimum two drivers for an overnight journey so that after the first one drives for a fixed distance, the second one is expected to take over but shockingly not even a single bus operator in the City follows the rule. The vehicle is driven by a single driver for more than 12 to 14 hours.
“This is mainly because of the shortage of drivers for private buses. The absence of training institutes is one of the reasons that is causing a shortage of efficient drivers. Unlike APSRTC, private bus operators do not have their own training institutes. However, we have requested the State government to open training institutes for private bus operators in the City so that more and more
drivers can be trained and appointed,” said, RTA joint transport commissioner G Panduranga Rao.