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Commuters stone 'dangerous' buses

By unknown | Feb 08, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Sakhile Mokoena

Sakhile Mokoena

Mpumalanga residents say they are sick and tired of travelling in the old and dangerous buses belonging to the local bus company.

There was chaos at the Bushbuckridge bus depot of Great North Transport yesterday when irate commuters stoned buses and threatened to set them alight if the company did not provide them with the promised new vehicles.

Many workers who travel between Bushbuckridge and Nelspruit stayed away from work and staged a march to complain about the "wrecks" the company uses to ferry them to work each day.

The bus company, owned by the Limpopo Development Corporation (Limdev), uses buses that were used in the former Gazankulu and Lebowa homelands more than 20 years ago.

Commuters say exhaust fumes pour inside these old buses and when it rains water leaks in. They also say the buses often break down making them late for work.

Apparently some of the buses spew so much smoke that drivers wear masks to cover their mouths and noses.

Limdev spokesman Leo Gama said new buses had been purchased and would be used as soon as they were registered.

"We understand the commuters' frustration. Our buses are very old and uncomfortable, but I promise that we are fazing them all out," he said.

He said that the company had bought a total of 200 new buses, but that commuters would need to wait another week before they were registered for use on the road.


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