I read with a heavy heart about the bus crash where seven youths from 4B Baling died and many more got injured. I was aghast when I got to know the bus owner sent an old bus though a new well maintained one was promised and that a person with no CVLB licence was hired to drive the bus.
We continue not to learn from past incidences. We continue to cut corners in the name of a few RM extra profit. We continue to be selfish and careless, not caring about other people but ourselves. And when something happens, then we say we are sorry and we did not know, we did not mean it. did the bus even go for PUSPAKOM testing and pass for roadworthiness?
Where is the management of the bus company? I have not heard or read anything about them apologising or even say anything. Where are the Directors or shareholders/owners of the company? Have they at least visited the victims and their families or even their own bus driver employee in hospital?
I urge the Ministry, RTD and whoever responsible come down hard on these characters. Fine, blacklist them and publish in the papers who these people are. furthermore, for flouting the rules by allowing a non-licences bus driver, they can be considered accomplices to the careless driving.
Apart from all these, the Ministry / Agencies involved must be pro-active rather than reactive. There must be measures to try prevent as much as possible. Enforcement and monitoring are important. Apart from registering drivers and vehicle testing, spot checks must be increased, both at the bus stations and on the road.
All of us who travel on the highway would have seen these buses charging along the highway at a higher speed limit than is allowed. Parliament should pass legislation that buses can only have speedometers to a maximum of 110 km/h. That can be done. Or at least a cut-off / alarm mechanism that not only alerts the bus driver /passengers when the bus is travelling above 90 km/h for example but also cuts off the engine ( if safe).
To put up CCTVs or conduct random highway checks might not be fully effective. Self policing such as that suggested above might be better.
Ahmad Ikmal Ismail