Santaco tells taxi drivers to obey road, Covid-19 rules ahead of festive period
Pretoria - Zero greed and maximum safety will ensure that the Tshwane taxi industry will still have passengers come January when festive holidays come to an end.
Spokesperson for the South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) in Tshwane McDonald Makata made the remarks ahead of Friday when people are expected to start travelling long distances in large numbers.
However, he said the industry in Tshwane was ready and encouraged taxi operators to remember that long distance trips were still limited to 70% capacity, and all Covid-19 regulations will form part of road safety regulations, and authorities will monitor overcrowding.
He said Santaco in Gauteng will be embarking on a road safety campaign working with the government and other stakeholders to visit taxi associations and remind operators to put the safety of passengers before money.
He said: "We are experiencing the second scourge of this Covid-19 and we therefore encourage our operators not to load above the limit because if people die in numbers we are going to all lose money.
"It will be the mortuaries alone who make money and we won't have passengers to drive back to their destinations when January hits. We understand a lot of operators lost money this year but we urge them to remember that life is much more important than money.
"We are also reminding them to obey all the rules of the road and ensure that passengers feel safe and secure in their care. We don't want to lose lives on the roads, especially at a time when too many of our people lost their lives to this pandemic.
"You know and understand that 70% capacity may not be ideal but we are not going to be driven by financial greed but a will to safely deliver people to their various destinations"
Makata said the industry is expecting the festive travel chaos to start this Friday and last well into the week of Christmas. From there they'll be a somewhat breather, just until early in January when people return to their homes to resume work and school.
Meanwhile, Arrive Alive encourages people to obey the rules of the road, carry their driver’s licences with them, plan the route to a holiday destination and allow enough time to reach the destination.
Organisations said drivers should also ensure that their vehicles are in a roadworthy condition before departure. All lights and indicators, windscreens, windscreen wipers, brakes, steering, shock absorbers, exhaust system and tyres should be carefully examined for faults.