Major fitness features are severely lacking in buses in Dhaka and adjacent districts, shows a Bangladesh Road Transport Authority report submitted to the High Court on Thursday.
The report says that 33 per cent of buses do not have fitness certificates while condition of engines of 59 per cent, speed governor seals of 56 per cent, bodies of 46 per cent, both indicator and signal lights of 41 per cent, chassis of 38 per cent, wheel arch of 36 per cent and both wipers and brake lights of 31 per cent buses are in a bad condition.
The report which was prepared on a random survey on 39 buses, 22 trucks and 22 CNG-run auto-rickshaws shows that out of the total 83 vehicles, 24 per cent have no fitness certificates while date of CNG cylinders in 27 per cent vehicles has expired.
The report in its observation says that the results do not reflect the reality as 86 per cent of the vehicles are in good condition as they have fitness certificates.
On November 1, 2018, BRTA formed a 15-member committee to identify fitness of vehicles to comply with directive given by the High Court on July 31, 2018.
The committee conducted a survey at Chandra in Gazipur, Kanchpur in Narayanganj, Nimtola in Mawa and Banani in Dhaka between November 20 and December 11 in 2018.
Of all vehicles, 95 per cent still have angles and 90 per cent have bumpers while speed governor seals of 41 per cent, indicator and signal lights of 30 per cent and bodies and brake lights of 29 per cent vehicles are in a bad condition.
Besides, brakes of 100 per cent, steering of 96 per cent, headlights of 95 per cent, seats of 94 per cent, windows of 90 per cent, doors of 89 per cent, chassis and speedometers of 80 per cent are in good condition.
Number of seats in 67 per cent of buses has been increased illegally while date of 44 per cent cylinders in CNG buses has expired, it continues.
Twenty-four per cent trucks have no fitness certificates and 95 per cent trucks still have angles and 91 per cent have bumpers.
Eighteen per cent CNG autos do not have any fitness certificates.
As regard the limitations of the survey, the report says that it has been conducted manually, with the help of eyes only.
Representatives from transport owners’ and workers’ associations were members of the committee and it can be guessed that the news of the survey was somehow divulged and so many unfit vehicles may have avoided the areas of survey on the days, the report says.
It recommends an urgent scientific survey on vehicles, especially public transports, to find out the level and extent of problems related to unfit vehicles and get a real picture of the prevailing situation. This is necessary to prevent road accidents and check fatalities.
Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology’s Accident Research Institute assistant professor Kazi Md Shifun Newaz, also a member of the committee, told New Age that the survey results were not realistic at all as it was not conducted in a scientific manner.
He said that they could not check the brakes of the vehicles practically and this was why brakes of all vehicles were found in a good condition.
Representatives from BRTA, Road Transport and Highways Division, Police Headquarters, Highway Police, Local Government Engineering Division, Public Security Division, Dhaka South City Corporation, Bangladesh Road Transport Owners’ Association, Bangladesh Road Transport Workers’ Federation, Dhaka Metropolitan CNG Auto-Rickshaw Businessmen Owners’ Association and civil society were on the committee.
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