Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Stricter safety measures to be imposed, says minister

KUALA LUMPUR: Stricter measures are set to be imposed on bus operators and drivers in view of the poor safety record of the industry, said Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Kaprawi.

For this, the ministry will be ha­­ving a meeting with relevant stakeholders that include the Land Public Transport Commission, the Road Safety Department, today to discuss measures that could be put to place to ensure the safety of bus passengers.

“The Government is looking at the bus accident seriously and we will do anything to do ensure the safety of the bus passengers,” he said when asked to comment on the case where a double-decker express bus plunged down a slope along the Kuantan-Segamat trunk road on Sunday near here, causing the death of a passenger.

The bus was carrying around 40 people when it crashed near the Sungai Jernih plantation at around 4.40pm on Sunday.

This was the third incident invol­ving an express bus in Pahang over the past eight days.
On April 12, a Transnasional double-decker express bus hit an electric pole and overturned in Bentong, killing three passengers.

Abdul Aziz stressed that action can be taken against bus operators who fail to comply with SPAD’s safety regulations.

Meanwhile, the driver of the tour bus involved in Sunday’s fatal accident along the Kuantan-Segamat trunk road has tested negative for drugs.

Pahang police chief Senior Deputy Comm Datuk Sharifuddin Ab Ghani said a blood sample would be taken for further testing.

The driver of a double-decker bus involved in a crash at Bentong on April 12 had also claimed trial to a charge of driving under the influence of drugs and causing the death of three passengers.

Wan Khairul Affendi Wan Mustapa, 39, was accused of committing the offence at Km11 of Jalan Baru Bentong-Raub at about 12.30am.

Magistrate Mohd Isa Md Nor fixed bail at RM4,000 with one surety and set May 19 for the case to be mentioned.

In the incident, the vehicle driven by Wan Khairul Affendi hit a electric pole and overturned, killing Saeed Mohamad Mohamud Abdalla, 31; Zarifah Alias, 26; and Suhaisam Che Abdulla, 33.

His bus driving licence will also be suspended until the case is settled.

Wan Khairul had also pleaded not guilty to a charge of drug abuse last Wednesday.


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