NTSA suspends licences of four matatu saccos after fatal crashes
The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) has suspended licences of four public service vehicle saccos after some of their vehicles were involved in fatal road accidents.
According to the board led by chairman Aden Noor Ali, the licenses of PSV operators involved in the recent accidents this month were suspended with immediate effect.
“Public service operators involved in fatalities in the last 30 days, we hereby suspend operations and suspension of their licenses with immediate effect pending investigations,” he said.
He said that the drivers are also required to undergo a safety compliance assessment before they are cleared.
The exercise will entail inspection of all their vehicles to ascertain roadworthiness, assessment of driver qualifications, driving ability examination, and demonstration of full compliance with the PSV Regulations, 2014.
Those affected are Taita Taveta Sacco that was involved in an accident on April 15 that killed 10 people, Tahmeed Sacco where four people lost their lives, Team Swat Logistics and Kyoga Hauliers Kenya Limited in which five students died.
The transport authority further announced measures to ensure compliance and restoration of sanity on roads.
“All PSV saccos have been given a 30-day notice to ensure they operate a minimum of 30 vehicles as per the NTSA regulations or have their licenses revoked,” said Ali.
The authority also said that it was mandatory for operators to have a valid inspection for all vehicles, road service licenses, valid driving licenses, and PSV Badges for all drivers and conductors.
Other strict measures to rein in rogue drivers include installation of approved speed limiters by CMTE, KEBS and the Authority.
“The Authority shall provide both technological and policy advisory support to the National Police Service to ensure the fulfillment of their mandate regarding the enforcement of traffic laws” said the agency.
Reckless drivers have also been put on notice even as NTSA and Police launch a joint crackdown targeting motorists who violate the Traffic Act and related laws.
“Pursuant to Section 40 of the Traffic Act, the Authority in conjunction with the National Police Service shall commence the suspension, revocation and/or re-testing of any driver who is observed to drive in such a manner as to be a source of danger to the public. For purposes of clarity, this shall include motorists driving in a reckless, careless and/or dangerous manner,” said Ali.
Further, the authority warned that the same disciplinary action shall be taken against any other saccos involved in fatal crashes going forward.
The latest warning’s come days after Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen announced a series of measures for all public service vehicle (PSV) and commercial vehicle drivers following a recent increase in road accidents.
The CS said that all drivers will now be subject to mandatory retesting when their licences expire as part of efforts to tackle the rising number of road accidents.
Murkomen said the ministry is working with other government agencies and stakeholders in the transport sector to implement stringent measures to improve road safety and save lives.
As part of its efforts, from 1 June 2023, drivers of PSVs and commercial vehicles will undergo various retests to ensure that they are fit to operate their services.
“It will be mandatory for drivers to undergo a driver retest upon renewal of their licences,” he said.
The CS directed the NTSA to form an inter-agency enforcement team bringing together the Anti-Counterfeiting Authority, the Kenya Bureau of Statistics and the National Police Service to weed out distributors and suppliers of substandard products and spare parts.