BANGALORE: According to a recent news, the state transport department has come down heavily on manufacturers for insufficient emergency exits in buses. It filed its investigation report into the Mehbubnagar bus inferno to the transport commissioner.
A Jabbar Travels’ Volvo bus caught fire in the wee hours of October 30 near Mehbubnagar and 45 people were killed.
The report recommends that manufacturers must come up with better designs for long-distance buses. Sources said the choice of a middle door or more emergency windows should be left to the manufacturer.
Officials told TOI, “Such infernos happen worldwide but people don’t get charred inside. They have enough time and means of escape. In this incident, people couldn’t escape as soon as the bus hit the culvert. The driver’s over-speeding is the first and foremost cause of the accident. When he slammed the brakes, it caused friction and sparks hit the fuel tank. But the fire engulfed the bus not from the sparks alone; there were malfunctions in the engine box at the rear end as per our investigation.”
The second recommendation the department is keen on implementing is to enable GPS in long-distance buses. Sources said that if a GPS unit is fitted, the travel history of the bus can be traced at all times. “This will help us know where the bus is stopping, its speed and what it’s carrying. It’ll also help track how many hours a particular driver is driving and the rest hours of the crew,” said officials.