Ban bakkies for transporting pupils

This is an open letter to all the principals and governing bodies (SGB) of schools whose children are being transported by light delivery vehicles (LDVs) with canopies attached to the load boxes, and especially to the traffic department, and departments of Education, Transport and Health.

These LDVs are nothing but death traps and I cannot understand how the departments allow them.

Based on my experience with design (draughting), development and testing (engineering) with these type of vehicles, the cab, which is a passenger-carrying unit, must conform to a number of safety specifications. It must be tested by an accredited institution to ensure these standards are met and maintained.

The same does not apply to the load box which only needs to be reinforced sufficiently to carry the load (one ton, etc), for which it has been designed. Also these children are subjected to exhaust fumes coming into the load box area which can/may have an adverse effect on their health.

Up to 20 children are loaded onto these vehicles. The Road Traffic Regulation 250 clearly states that persons are not to be carried in the goods compartment for reward.

Therefore, I request the traffic department and departments of Education, Transport and Health to put an end to this type of transport of school children as it is against the law/regulation.

-Isaac Adams, Ward 11 DA councillor, Port Elizabeth

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