SEREMBAN: Painting their vans yellow is among the tactics used by unlicensed school van operators in Negeri Sembilan to avoid detection when ferrying students to school.

State Road Transport Department (RTD) director Hanif Yusabra Yusuf said it is now up to parents to ensure that they engage the services of licensed school van operators and not to put their children at risk.

Parents must also make sure the school van operators have the relevant permits from the Land Public Transport Agency to ensure the safety of their children.

He said the use of illegal school van services is not only risky as they do not have the proper insurance coverage in case of emergencies.

“They tricked parents into believing they are legitimate by painting their vans yellow when in fact they do not have the permits or insurance coverage.

“Our intelligence report showed that there are illegal vans which pick up and send a large number of children to schools in just to make profits without thinking of the safety aspects and so forth,” he told reporters after conducting an operation against illegal school van operators in Negeri Sembilan here today.

Hanif said school van operators claimed the high cost charged by PUSPAKOM (Computerised Vehicle Inspection Centre) as one reason why they refused to go for inspections.

The operators also claimed that they have to undergo an inspection every six months which is costly.

Commenting on the operations today, Hanif Yusabra said 28 RTD personnel were involved including enforcement officers.

“Our intelligence showed that a total of 16 vehicles were operating without permits,” he said.

He added that among the offences committed were operating without a valid licence and without insurance. — Bernama