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6 Months On, Safety Forgotten

Transport Commissioner Amaranarayana is unaware that most bus operators do not instruct passengers on precautions on board

Published: 17th April 2014 08:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th April 2014 08:27 AM   |  A+A-

The recent accidents and resultant fire in Volvo buses may have put the spotlight on the lack of awareness about safety precautions to be followed on buses. However, nearly six months after the Mahbubnagar tragedy, the accidents seem to be forgotten and also the need for better safety mechanisms. “Immediately after the accidents, I travelled to Mumbai by SRS Travels in December. We were shown videos on where the emergency exits and the fire extinguishers were located,” said Reema Khanna, a communications manager in a private firm. However, no videos were shown aboard KSRTC and SRS buses she travelled on between January and April, she complained. Vatsal Mehta, a software engineer with Accenture, recalls his recent trip to Mumbai. “VRL showed us a video of their achievements and a movie, but nothing about safety precautions or what to do during an emergency,” he said. KSRTC MD Manjunath Prasad, however, claims that videos explaining where the emergency exits are located and how they can be accessed are being shown on buses. Neither Transport Commissioner K Amaranarayana nor Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy were able to confirm whether the instructions were being followed, citing election preparation and model code of conduct. Amaranarayana said while KSRTC had installed emergency doors in buses, private vehicles were yet to fully comply. “Private bus operators had asked us for more time to fit emergency doors to buses as there was a rush in the workshops,” he said. When it was brought to his attention that most buses did not comply with the Transport Department’s order on bus operators requiring to instruct passengers on safety precautions, he said he was not aware of this. “We will ensure that our officials revisit the issue,” he said. Reddy said bus operators will have to install emergency doors over the next one year to get Fitness Certificates. Checks will be carried out, after the elections, to ensure that instructions are being followed, he added.

 

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