High-quality public and pupil transport needed

2017-06-01 06:02

I SYMPATHISE with M. Mashimane’s problems arising from the prohibition on taking children to school on the back of a bakkie, but it seems there is no easy solution (Government should assist us, May 18).

What is of concern to me is that even with a canopy fitted, the load area of a bakkie is not safe in the event of an accident.

So many children, and adults, have been killed or injured when these bakkies overturn, usually due to the negligent, reckless and often aggressive driving habits that seem to be the norm on our roads.

What I do feel the government needs to tighten up on is the quality of drivers entrusted with public transport. There should be stringent licence requirements and monitoring of these drivers, and proper vehicles need to be used, as understood by Mashimane.

Perhaps the solution for bakkie owners, who are now out of pocket, is to go into the transportation of loads other than people.

I’m sure there is a demand for removal of builder’s rubble and garden refuse, and transportation of furniture, courier work, and so on, for which a bakkie could be suitable.

I don’t know how many school children are in need of transport, distances involved, condition of roads and so on, but as Mashimane says, the government should be assisting and not leaving parents with the dilemma of finding some unorthodox means of getting their children to school.

There really should be a quality public transport service if there is a demand, and that could create employment for the responsible drivers who now find themselves out of work.

I feel strongly about the safety of children because I have witnessed a serious accident in which children’s bodies were flung in all directions. It was a sight I will never recover from. I also witnessed a similar taxi accident. In both cases the drivers were overtly and wildly reckless. One never forgets these experiences which are relived every time one reads of yet another case.

Witness

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