The drive, being conducted by the police and the Transport Department officials in tandem today, is to ensure adherence to the Tamil Nadu Motor Vehicles Special Rules - 2012 norms.
The police and the officials have decided to conduct a mass inspection of school buses at the Armed Reserve Ground here on Saturday to ensure their compliance with the norms laid down under the Tamil Nadu Motor Vehicles (Regulation and Control of School Buses) Special Rules - 2012.
The officials explained the salient features of the Special Rules to around 250 school heads during a meeting convened to discuss proposed changes in school timings at the Collectorate on Friday. Addressing the gathering, Regional Transport Officer (Madurai Central) K. Kalyanakumar said school bus drivers on duty must wear khaki uniforms.
A log book should be maintained for every school bus and all the details related to its maintenance must be marked in it. The drivers should be strictly instructed to conduct a thorough inspection of the bus on a daily basis. They should also hand over their mobile phones to the attendants while driving the vehicle and wear seat belts without fail.
“Drivers must treat all the children travelling in the bus as their own and ensure their safety. A driver’s job is very crucial because all his senses have to be alert while driving. Apart from using his hands, legs, eyes and ears, the driver should also use his nose to find out if there is any oil leakage. Even a small distraction will lead to a fatal accident,” he cautioned.
Regional Transport Officer (Madurai North) N. Ravichandran pointed out that it had been mandatory for every school bus to carry at least two fire extinguishers. They should also contain a first-aid box.
Racks for keeping school bags must be provided under the seats and not close to the roof as was the common practice, he said.
“The drivers should not be drunk and they must sport an identity card issued by the school. They must talk politely to the school children and not behave rudely. The buses must be fitted with easily accessible steps and the footboard must contain railings on both sides. Once in three months, the school heads must send a report on the maintenance of the buses to the RTOs,” he added.