Over 5,400 cases of YBS rules violation reported in 10 months

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YBS buses in downtown Yangon before the outbreak of COVID-19. File Photo: Phoe Khwar

With taking of legal action against YBS buses for violation of the rules, more than 5,400 YBS cases were reported in the past ten months, said U Hla Aung, joint secretary of the Yangon Region Transport Authority (YRTA). The Traffic Regulatory Teams are checking and taking action against YBS bus lines that broke the rules and regulations. From 1 January to 26 October, the teams took action against 4,312 buses, while 1,094 letters of complaints were received from passengers and 35 cases of buses crossing of other areas were reported, he added. Although the YBS, the primary provider of public transport for Yangon’s inner-city commuters, has now completed a term of over three years, some YBS drivers are still breaking the rules: they do not stop at the bus stops. They are collecting bus fares instead of letting passengers put the busfares in the slot machines. However, the number of violation cases has declined compared to that of former All Private Bus Lines Control Committee (Ma-Hta-Tha), he explained. “The situation of the YBS drivers has changed. Earlier, there are drivers and bus conductors onboard on the buses. So, people are always seeing the drivers and conductors together as one is bad, and the other is bad too. Previously, public transport was based on private bus lines. Now, we are running buses with the company system. Some of the drivers are earning nearly ten thousand kyats daily. It is legal. Earlier, they had to take the money without knowing the bus owners. Some are asking the extra fare from the passengers,” he added.
Therefore, the transport authority has issued smart cards to YBS drivers so that it will have personal information on every driver. The YRTA is hoping that will make it easier for the authorities to deal with the complaints or take action against the undisciplined bus drivers. Currently, more than 9,000 drivers have been issued with smart cards.
YBS special driver training courses were first opened in July 2017 to reduce traffic accidents and ensure compliance with the traffic rules and regulations. Most of them are currently employed in YBS bus lines, according to YRTA. Earlier, those holding a five-year (E) (Nga) driving licence could attend the YBS driver training, and now those who have a three-year driving licence can apply for the courses.
The Yangon Bus Service was launched on 16 January 2017. Before the pandemic outbreak, more than 100 bus lines were running 4,500 buses on 135 routes, along with the airport shuttle and the city transit. The number of daily commuters has reached almost 1.8 million.
(Translated by Hay Mar)

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