The Traffic Department will today — Monday — begin checking omnibuses for insurance after two of three vans in a smash-up along the Vigie Highway recently were found to be uninsured.
More than a dozen persons were injured in the accident.
Head of the Traffic Branch, Superintendent of Police Kenneth John, told a meeting of the National Omnibuses Association (NOBA) on Sunday that drivers will be required, as of today to have their insurance certificate in their omnibuses.
“… the traffic officers are outside doing what we call traffic checks. And we discovered that a number of the omnibuses are uninsured; a lot!” John said, but added that he could not give the exact figure.
“And we as members of the Traffic Branch, we cannot just sit by and allow that to go like that. We are planning to do something about it. So, sometime in this week, I am going to call on the president [of NOBA, Anthony “Code Red” Bacchus] to meet with him at the Traffic Branch, because we are going to carry out a check to ensure that all omnibuses are ensured.”
John appealed for the cooperation of omnibus drivers, saying that the police want to conduct the checks in a very orderly way.
“And once you comply with the officer, it is only going to be about 10 to 15 seconds the officer is going to stop you for.”
He said police officer will stop the omnibus, the driver will be asked to present the insurance certificate, and the officer will check it against the vehicle’s registration number.
“Every omnibus will be checked. Every one! So all I am begging, insure your motor vehicle before you bring them on the road,” John said as he spoke of the recent accident.
“Twelve to 15 persons were injured. Only one of the omnibuses was insured. The other two are uninsured,” he said.
“I, as the head of the Traffic Department, am not going to stand by and allow that to happen,” he said.
John said he was pleased to hear the NOBA president call on all drivers to cooperate with the police.
“And I’d love to see that day when the police and minibus drivers are cooperating. And I know that will make our job easier.
“But you have to remember that we the police, we are placed out there for a particular purpose, and our purpose out there is safety. And if we do not do our part, the road will not be safe for that youngster there and that one over there,” he said, pointing at two children at the meeting.
Minister of Transport Sen. Julian Francis and Commissioner of Police Michael Charles also attended Sunday’s meeting.
The meeting discusses a number proposals relating to omnibus operations and traffic control.
Prosecute them to the full letter of the law and give them the maximum penalty to deter others.
These people must have the vehicles consficated and be banned from owning or driving a minibus for life. On top of that a massive fine and imprisonment.
This nonsense must stop, only in St Vincent is this kind of lawless ness is allowed to happen. I keep saying that they need a special squad with unmarked vehicles to patrol the streets especially at peak hours who’s Job is to deal specifically with these mini van drivers they think they own the road …..how could we have mini van drivers with more than 10 traffic offences still driving and we are told that some of them have in excess of 50 traffic violations….What a country only in St Vincent.
I think it’s time we take a serious look at these buses in SVG. The Kind of speed they drive is ridiculous, on an island so small where the hell are they going in such a hurry? It is down right dangerous and something needs to be done, I never wanted SVG to has speed limits but it’s time speed limits are put in and enforced.
Make all Vehicles carry GPS units that records there speeds everyday and have them come to down one a week to get the reading from the units, if they if they were over the limit on any day give them a ticket. these are things that cost less than $100 per bus, when is Vincy ever going to make progress? Mudduwuk Vincy time to do better, we are falling too far behind.
Limit minibus drivers to three offenses,after which recall license to drive a public transport.
Encourage citizens to report reckless driving.
What about all the ordinary citizens driving vehicles without insurance? What about all of the wealthy Vincentians not paying income tax or cheating on their tax returns? What about all the people buying goods they know have been stolen?
SVG has dropped over the abyss and there is no way to climb out. Anyone believing otherwise has to be delusional.
I would like to know why are uninsured vehicles being licensed. On going to license a vehicle, the owner should show proof from the insurance company that the vehicle has already been insured, then and only then should the license be renewed. There should be some way that both the license and the insurance should be renewed simultaneously, so as to avoid this issue
As a vincentian I want the government to be more strict with those minibus drivers .They are risking people life’s with out insurance ,drinking and driving speeding with young kids , we have to to protect our citizen also the tourist who are visiting the country in North America you get charge for DUI and even prison it is people life those mini bus drivers dealing with stict laws should be in place. All drivers should have insurance drivers license and the vehicle owner ship at all times .
I know of at least 3 minibus driver that paid for their drivers license. These are guys that can hardly read and write. Who is selling drivers license? That’s what they need to uncover.
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