Driver queries auction of bus

A FORMER Vincent bus driver says the council mismanaged a community bus which it now intends to auction off, a move he labelled “opportunistic”.

Robert Stall worked as a casual driver for the council from 2011-2014 and says there was plenty of demand for the service. He can’t understand how the council let that drop off.

“On the day trips there could be anything between 15 and 20 passengers on the bus, depending on the destination on a particular day,” he said.

Mr Hall said all passengers were either senior citizens or Vincent ratepayers and enjoyed the opportunity to visit places without having to worry about driving or getting a lift.

The council says the lack of ramp made the bus too hard for people with a disability to use, Mr Hall says that wasn’t a problem before.

“The fact there was no disability ramp did not factor into the situation then – all citizens who registered for the trips had to be reasonably mobile, i.e no walking frames or wheelchairs, but some did have walking sticks,” Mr Stall said.

He says the casual bus drivers helped to keep the repair costs down, as they’d check oil, fuel, water, tyres, cleanliness and even dents before each outing.

“There was a check sheet for each and every outing which had to be completed and submitted,” he says.

According to the former driver, the biggest shame will be no longer seeing the enjoyment and happiness on passengers’ faces as they visit destinations like Wanneroo Botanic Gardens and the annual Christmas light displays.

by WADE ZAGLAS

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