CHENNAI: As many as 1,263 school buses and vans failed in the fitness examination in a joint inspection in 25 districts across the State. This includes 228 vehicles in Chennai district.
According to Transport commissioner C Samayamoorthy, of the total 32,389 buses and vans permitted for transporting school children in the State, 10,549 have been inspected by the respective road safety councils in 25 districts till May 17. The vehicle inspection records of Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur, Cuddalore, Villupuram, Tiruvannamalai, Nilgiris and Ramanathapuram districts, are yet to be finalised.
“About 1,263 vehicles failed to meet the standards prescribed in the Tamil Nadu Motor Vehicles (Regulation and Control of School Buses) Special Rules 2012. The highest number of vehicles over 184, were rejected in Kanniyakumari district. About 154 and 149 vehicles were rejected in Vellore and Namakkal districts, respectively. A total of 140 vehicles failed in Tiruppur district,” said the Commissioner, adding that the exercise will continue till all the buses undergo inspection.
During the inspection of vehicles, officials of the joint inspection committee, comprising transport, police, education and revenue, checked the height of the footboard, strength of the floor, fire extinguisher, first aid kit, speed governor, driver cabin, seats, bag racks, windows, windows grill, first aid box and emergency exits.
An RTO in Chennai said buses which didn’t have bag racks, emergency exit and windows grill, were rejected. “A few buses have got weak footboard and platform near the gearbox. Buses which have expired medicines in the first aid kit, were also rejected. We have temporarily suspended the fitness certificate for these buses. The educational institutions, that own the buses, can apply for fitness certificate after making the necessary repair works before schools’ reopening day,” he said.
The RTO officials have pasted the OK-sticker on those buses that have passed in the inspection, for identifying the buses during vehicle check-up.
Earlier in 2012 the State government had issued the Tamil Nadu Educational Institutions Special Rules, laying down strict guidelines for issuing fitness certificates for vehicles that transport school children.
With 2,603 vehicles, Salem district has the highest number of buses and vans registered for schools, followed by Kancheepuram with 2,233. In Coimbatore, 2015 vehicles are permitted for transporting school children.