LPG-run vans continue to threaten safety of schoolchildren in city
What could be more ironical for a society than to have a lackadaisical attitude towards small children? Despite assuring action, private school vans hired by parents of small children continue to run on manually fitted LPG kits, thereby exposing the little students to a grave risk.
On January 15, SSP, Traffic, Mohan Lal had said his department would take a stern action. A reality check revealed that dilapidated private vans having manually fitted LPG kits, using subsidised cylinders, ferry small children from home to school and back with impunity.
“Laws are being violated with impunity. These vehicles are being run in violation of almost all the Supreme Court guidelines,” said Shevta Singh, a working woman, who comes to an elite school in the city here to pick her child.
Not only these vans are being run on LPG, but also violate basic Supreme Court guidelines, like all such vehicles ferrying schoolchildren should be painted yellow, must have first aid box and school van written boldly on front and rear portions, she added.
She blames parents for compromising with the safety and security of their child.
“Everyone knows the perils of travelling in vehicles having manually fitted LPG kit. Leave aside its bad odour gas, a spark or a short circuit can spell doom,” she said.
Though not all the van drivers run their vans on LPG, those who do gave a “logical” reason saying, “We charge less from the parents compared to petrol-run vans.”
“It is no big issue. A lot of people travel in LPG-run vehicles,” they added.
Majority of these vans were being run on subsidised domestic cylinders meant for BPL families.
On January 2 this year, the Education Department had issued a circular to all the Chief Education Officers with the Supreme Court guidelines for safety of schoolchildren being ferried by school buses.
Among other instructions, major guidelines prescribed are that school buses and vans should be painted yellow; “School Bus” be written on front and rear of buses and vans; if hired, “On School Duty” must be written prominently; a fire extinguisher and first-aid box are must and school’s name, phone numbers must be written conspicuously.