Stock Photo by Sean Locke www.digitalplanetdesign.com

Authorities must test drivers before issuing a license

An RSE worker shared his experience on YTS detailing how a 40ft Container truck nearly ran over a bus with 15 Vanuatu workers on board.

The Container truck had to sway onto the grass because of a mistake by the Vanuatu driver. The driver was said to have gotten his license a year before leaving for NZ.

An important issue with Vanuatu workers who are on RSE Scheme is that a lot of them have never been properly processed through Traffic laws to get their licenses.

This issue has been a domestic issue but the effects of not properly processing drivers in Vanuatu can now be witnessed on the RSE program.

While rules of the road are both the laws and the informal rules that may have developed over time to facilitate the orderly and timely flow of traffic, in Vanuatu there is no proof that our drivers are put through proper driving test to prove they do harness the knowledge of driving as skill that requires huge responsibilities.

A recent accident in NZ was said to be the fault of a Vanuatu driver who tried to over take another vehicle and causing that vehicle to hit his vehicle and crashing head on onto another vehicle.

Locals on the YTS pages are asking that authorities must ensure any Vanuatu driver especially on RSE programs must be well versed and tested for the NZ Road Code or the Australian Road Code.

After so many deaths and loss of work opportunities due to dangerous driving, it is time the Vanuatu Government seriously take matters into its own hands and deals seriously to ask the RSE program to set guidelines for Vanuatu Drivers who want to be eligible to drive whilst on the job.

The matter is a big worry in Vanuatu as well as it is local knowledge that a lot of drivers have not been properly processed or tested to drive but have been issued driving license.

In the capital Port Vila where for the past two years, there is no proper signage system to guide drivers and no proper road traffic patrols to ensure every driver behaves in an orderly manner, how bus drivers drive around town does speak for itself.

A lot of times in Port Vila, drivers give way because they feel the need to and not because a road signage says to. A lot of traffic road signs do not exist because of vandalism and this is because there is no proper Policing of the roads.

By allowing a carefree Vanuatu driver to drive in a foreign country is a big risk that a lot of companies must be prepared to take given in Vanuatu there is a lot of road works happening and new drivers have not yet experienced the real road rules until all the current developments are complete.

However for Public safety, it is very important that all RSE Drivers be tested or be reprocessed in countries they work in and to trust a Vanuatu driver with one year experience is not a risk you companies should take. These drivers are still learning the roads here in Vanuatu.

The Rates and Taxes Department and the Vanuatu Police Force must ensure they comply with all traffic regulations when issuing licenses and must ensure Vanuatu drivers know the road rules or we will continue to witness careless accidents both within Vanuatu and outside Vanuatu.