Bangladesh targets dangerous vehicles
Saturday 26 June 2010
Bangladesh announced a crackdown Friday on the thousands of decrepit and dangerous vehicles that ply Dhaka's busy roads in a bid to ease chronic traffic congestion.
A team of 17 magistrates has been appointed to identify and remove from service an estimated 12,000 buses, minibuses and trucks that are over 20 years old, said Communications Minister Syed Abul Hossain.
"This drive will greatly help reduce traffic jams and accidents in the capital," he said.
Buses that are older than 20 years are already banned from the capital's streets, but the law is routinely ignored. Local media reports say illegal buses are involved in the majority of road accidents in Dhaka.
Dhaka is one of the most congested cities in the world, according to the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA).
BRTA said the city has 527,285 licensed vehicles, but this is growing by about 20,000 a year in line with the city's population growth - which is up from 200,000 in 1974 to 12 million in 2010.
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