Most of the school vans which were impounded by the district administration during its two-day drive, did not have the required permits and the drivers were operating them illegally.
The vehicles were impounded after the Regional Transport Authority (RTA) decided to carry out a surprise check in the district to curb violations of rules.
RTA Secretary Sukhwinder Kumar told Chandigarh Newsline that during the two day drive a total of 44 vehicles were impounded, out of which 25 were without permits. He added that the drivers cannot operate the vehicles without a permit.
On the compromise in the safety of school children traveling on vehicles without permits, Secretary Sukwinder Kumar said that without having the permit, the drivers could ignore the guidelines issued for school buses, which includes the rules that drivers cannot operate outside the area of 50 km, driving licence, passing of vehicle from MVA, having attendants and painting the vehicle yellow.
“There are set guidelines and the drivers have to follow it. The vehicles without permit can easily violate these guidelines and put the life of children in danger,” Sukhwinder Kumar told Newsline.
On other violations, Secretary Sukhwinder Kumar said that during the inspection of vehicles, they also found that four vehicles were operating without the ‘Fitness Certificate’.
He said, “For every vehicle there is a fitness certificate which shows the vehicle’s capacity to carry a certain amount of load and features, like its life, ignoring which could be dangerous for children’s safety.”
Speaking further, Sukhwinder Kumar said that during the inspection of vehicles they found that most of the vehicles did not have CCTV cameras and fire extinguishers.
“Many vehicles had extinguishers, but they had passed their expiry date, which is also a violation. We have decided that we will keep an eye on the vans which are being operated in the schools,” he added.
The district administration had issued 177 challans and impounded 44 vehicles during a two-day drive. The drive to check violations in the operation of school buses was initiated after the death of four school children in a school van accident in Sangrur district on February 15.
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