Road accident deaths more than those from natural causes - NTC
'Public shying away from public transport':
People die in road accidents more than from diseases or other natural
disasters, National Transport Commission chairman Roshan Gunawardene
Addressing the first workshop to educate private bus owners, drivers
and conductors on road safety in the Nuwara Eliya district, Gunawardene
said people have discarded the public transport service due to
increasing incidence of road traffic crashes involving passenger
transport buses and increased private vehicle usage due to tax
reduction. Gunawardene quoting the Central Bank Annual Report, said the
use of public transportation has decreased from 61 percent in 2011 to 49
"The number of people using passenger transport services has reduced
prompting them to patronise their own vehicles. Therefore, we need to
encourage public transport services by providing a satisfactory and
punctual service," Gunawardene said.
"We have initiated a programme to educate and train personnel,
private bus owners, drivers and conductors on road safety to accomplish
this. Bus operators should obey road rules to minimise accidents," the
The NTC is committed to safeguard the private bus industry and create
disciplined drivers through awareness and training programmes conducted
district wise. "We are responsible to provide a safe and comfortable
transport service to the public," he said.
Gunawardene said the underlying cause of the majority of accidents
"Therefore, both the driver and the conductor have a responsibility
to correct their faulty practices," he said.
"We will implement a special mechanism to appreciate the service of
drivers and conductors not involved in any wrongful activities on the
road," he said.
"The best driver and conductor will be rewarded and their names
published in the media,websites and notice boards. All drivers and
conductors who have successfully completed the training course will be
issued identity cards," Gunawardene said.