The Transport Authority chairman has admitted to a gaping hole in the regulation of public transport’s private operators, declaring that it simply does not have enough inspectors to monitor the behaviour of public service vehicles (PSVs) on the road.
Plagued by numerous reports of indiscipline on the road by PSV operators, chairman Ian Estwick declared that more officers are needed to ensure that PSVs operate within the guidelines as they transport commuters around the island.
He said neither the Transport Authority nor the Barbados Licensing Authority had been able to provide the numbers needed.
While there was an adequate number of terminal wardens, they were not allowed to police the roads, he added.
“Right now we’re unable to police the roads as we like because of a shortage of staff both at the Barbados Licensing Authority and the Transport Authority, the Transport Authority chairman said.
“We have terminal wardens but they are restricted to the terminals so we can’t provide them on the road to check on what is happening on the road.
“But we hope if not this year then sometime next year to be having assistance from the Barbados Licensing Authority in terms of their traffic inspectors who would be deployed on the road to ensure that the PSVs really conform to all of the rules and conditions of their permits.”
But during a tour of the Speightstown bus terminal, Estwick expressed hope for a ‘change of culture’ among PSVs when they move from the roadside to the terminal.
There, he said, the PSVs would be made to adhere to the rules and regulations of operating in the terminal.
Estwick said: “We’re going to try to change the culture and we’re going to do anything we can do to bring about some change in this sector.
“That along with some other measures we are going to introduce on July 31; we hope that these will bring better order into the terminals and also on the road.”