Express Bus Update: CVLB code to discipline bus operators

TRANSIT took note of a number of articles in the local media announcing that the CVLB will start enforcing its Safety, Health & Environment (SHE) code beginning March 2010

All 224 express bus operators will be required to attend a two-day Safety, Health and Environmental Management (SHE) course as part of the Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board’s (CVLB) new regulation.

CVLB chairman Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique said the course, starting on Feb 23, is to brief bus operators on the five requirements under SHE.

“SHE was added as part of the new licensing regulation for express buses following the Sani United Sdn Bhd bus accident which killed 10 people in Ipoh late last year.

TRANSIT Says:

While we are happy to see some small steps being taken by the CVLB to improve safety and security among express buses, we can only wonder how futile this all is.

We are shocked to think that the CVLB was created in 1987 but they have only developed a code of conduct for Safety, Health & Environment in 2010, after 23 years!

And we can only wonder how effective the 2-day course will be to unravel the culture of unfair treatment of employees, unsafe driving and recklessness that permeates the entire express bus industry.

The CVLB promises enforcement, but we know how empty these promises can be.

What’s worse is that nothing really has changed. Come March, the drivers will still be paid on a per-trip basis, they will still try to maximize the number of trips they can take, and they will still speed on the expressways wherever possible. And some of the vehicles that they drive will still be poorly maintained or unsafe.

The biggest tragedy is that there is really no change happening, despite the loss of so many people – mothers, fathers, husbands, wives, sons and daughters of someone – their lives cut short because people put profits above safety.

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