Motor Vehicle Ordinance of 1969, Regional Motor Vehicle Inspector, safe transport for school children, safety standards for school vehicles, School bus safety, Sindh Transport Authority, Syed Wajeeh-ul-Hassan Naqvi, transport operators
A significant number of children go to school in buses, coasters and high-roofs, and their commute is serious cause for concern for their parents, especially in light of the fact that several vehicles have recently met with accidents.
As a result, the Sindh Transport Authority has formulated a Bill consisting of laws pertaining to safety in these vehicles in May. The Bill will complement the Motor Vehicle Ordinance of 1969 which is currently in effect but does not have specific clauses regarding safe transport for school children.
The Bill’s summary was approved recently but the Bill has not gone into effect yet; the laws within it are in line with internationally accepted safety standards and should ideally be implemented across Pakistan.
Here are some of the laws included in the Bill and parents should keep them in mind to counter any misconduct by transport operators:
- The use of LPG is forbidden; petrol, diesel and CNG are acceptable.
- All vehicles must be painted yellow with the words “School Bus” written boldly on both sides to ensure visibility.
- At least one functioning fire extinguisher must be in place on board the vehicle.
- An attendant must be present to help seat children and ensure that they get on and off the vehicle safely.
- The number of seats in a vehicle varies according to its size; however, no additional seats should be placed and children must remain seated at all times.
- Each vehicle must have at least two doors.
- Each vehicle must be inspected every year by the Regional Motor Vehicle Inspector; if the vehicle passes the inspection, the owner will receive a fitness/maintenance certificate which must be visible in the vehicle, indicating that its safety requirements are up to date.
– Syed Wajeeh-ul-Hassan Naqvi
Information provided by the Sindh Motor Transport Authority.
First published in the ADBUZZZZ Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on August 17, 2014