A bus driver who collected dozens of schoolchildren each day had 49 defects on his vehicle including seven which were classed as ‘dangerous.’Martin Hewitt appeared at Letterkenny District Court in Co Donegal facing a number of charges after his bus was inspected by Gardai. It followed concerns expressed by the Road Safety Authority that they had been made aware of a defective bus which was doing school runs.Garda Sgt Vincent Muldoon said that on February 22nd, last year he went to Murlog National School in Lifford and saw 30 schoolchildren getting off a bus.He spoke to the driver Martin Hewitt and informed him the RSA wanted the bus to be inspected at a local garage in Letterkenny.Sgt Muldoon told the court that having tested the vehicle, mechanics found a total of 49 defects of which seven were classed as “dangerous.”These included an emergency door which would not open properly as well as the floor which he said “moved.”The court heard that Hewitt has bought the bus for £3,000 Stg in Northern Ireland a few months earlier and it was covered by a test of roadworthiness.Solicitor for Hewitt, Donough Cleary, said this test had expired in January and that Hewitt had brought the bus to McDaid’s Garage in Letterkenny who outlined a number of areas of work which needed to be completed.He said his client accepted that the work should have been done and that he should have tested the vehicle as soon as he brought it across the border into Donegal.He said the bus has since been scrapped.Hewitt did not have any contracts with Bus Eireann for school runs but carried out the bus run for children who did not qualify for free school transport in the area.He had been running such a service for 12 years.However, Judge Paul Kelly said what Hewitt, a father of four of Clonleigh Park Lifford, was doing was dangerous.“It seems extraordinary that this bus was allowed on the road. He was driving for close to two months without a certificate of roadworthiness to collect schoolchildren. It was a very dangerous situation,” he said.He fined Hewitt €250.Owner of school bus with 49 defects is fined was last modified: April 26th, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:buscourtdefectsGardaiLiffordMartin HewittRSASCHOOL
More than 88% of the driving licences issued in Hailakandi district of Assam have come under the scanner.The southern Assam district has 45,300 driving licence holders. A scrutiny during an attempt to convert the laminated paper licences to smart cards revealed that some 40,000 of them could be “doubtful” or procured fraudulently.Last week, Hailakandi’s District Transport Officer Syed Rafiqul Mannan issued an order saying a majority of the licences were purportedly issued by his counterpart in Manipur’s Bishnupur district while the rest were issued by a “certain district” of Nagaland. These licences were flagged as doubtful.Agents to blame? There have been cases of people acquiring driving licences from neighbouring States after their applications were rejected in Assam.The DTO said that most of the people who applied for smart card revealed on being questioned that they did not go to Manipur or Nagaland to obtain their licences. This brought to the fore the issue of bogus driving licences being made with the help of agents.“Data was not available online as most of the licences were of the laminated type. The process of converting them into smart cards was accordingly put on hold. More than 40,000 such licences are lying in my office,” Mr. Mannan said.Smart cards The smart cards would be issued once his counterparts in Manipur and Nagaland confirm the authenticity of the driving licences purportedly issued from their offices, he said.Officials said the licences will be cancelled, as per the Motor Vehicles Act, if they are not found to be genuine. People can reapply online for fresh smart card licences.