Miguel Arias Sanchez
HAVANA TIMES — Two days ago, I took the A-7 bus heading towards Guanabacoa. When I got on, I realized that the 50-something year old bus driver had a very beautiful young girl next to him inside his protection booth, the conversation seemed to be quite pleasant as they were both bursting into laughter.
The first thought and fear I suddenly had was when the driver heard the voice of somebody he knew shouting at him from the pavement; he braked sharply which sent all of the passengers forward, and some even fell on top of others. People immediately began to shout things at him like: animal, you’re transporting people here, brute, etc. The driver didn’t take it personally and continued to speed, passing bus stops and deciding, according to his convenience, where to stop the bus.
Not one transport inspector could be seen along the entire journey, just one at the Guanabacoa Lighthouse stop, where the driver did stop at the right place.
Even though you do see a lot more inspectors at official stops in the day, we still need a lot more. I haven’t seen a secret inspector ever on a bus, like what used to happen before when the driver who put his girlfriend or wife next to him while playing thumping music, never drove a bus again in his life because he was severely punished; a punishment which not only served as an example to others, but protected so many passengers’ lives. Today, these inspectors either don’t exist or they’re not doing their job properly. That’s why so many drivers feel free to do what they want when at work; because they know that nobody is controlling them.
Many traffic accidents are a result of not paying attention and losing control of the vehicle. They cost human lives and cause material damage which could be prevented, not to mention the pain families suffer. Drivers like this one on the A-7, instead of being responsible at the wheel of a bus, should be washing cars at the bus station terminal, or planting sugar cane, working the land to help the national economy grow, where they aren’t a threat to their fellow citizens who lose their lives because of them.