Port Vila Efate Land Transport Association (PVELTA) President, Donald Satungia, says the vehicle inspection regime being employed by the Public Works Department (PWD) engineers
will help get rid of those public transport buses of extremely poor conditions off the roads.
“Some buses we see on the roads look like they should’ve been written off a long time ago, but they are still on the road and doing services. So, this stringent road-worthiness checks being employed by PWD will help to get rid of these buses that are no longer worthy to serve the public.
“It is for this reason that I am happy with the standard of road-worthiness inspection being undertaken by the PWD team because it will help ease the situation,” he added.
Satungia says he has advised bus owners and drivers that, that eventuality will help their businesses because often times they maintain their vehicles, while there are some that do not have the permits to operate and vehicles in very poor conditions that go on the road and “steal” their businesses.
Hence, he is supportive of the level of checks being undertaken by PWD on vehicles because it will solve the current situation being faced by genuine public transport owners.
“The office of PVELTA salutes the government for implementing what I can say is not a new stringent way of checking vehicles,” he continued.
“I can recall the time my father was running a taxi service in the pre-independence and 1980s period when a small scratch, not a dent, on the vehicle we must paint over it with the same paint color before the vehicle was taken for inspection.
“And when the vehicle is at the inspection site, the engineer gets into the car and test for any mechanical defect before the vehicle is passed for service on the road.”
He believed it was in the 1990s that the PWD started getting “slack” in conducting the vehicle checks, but now the inspection regime is answering complaints his office was getting and the checks were what’s normal for safety on the road and giving a great sight of good looking vehicles on the roads.
PVELTA with the assistance of PWD engineers and inspectors are assisting the 2000-plus members of the association and encouraging them to go through this one-time-a-year exercise.
And the PVELTA President advised members to manage themselves and budget for attending the checks and paying the road tax.