The transportation industry in Belize is in terrible shape, and thatís putting it kindly. Terminals are deteriorating and so are the buses. Schedules are iffy at best and there are just too many commuters for the buses on the roadways, which leads to serious and even dangerous overcrowding. These conditions arenít new, and over the years it has become apparent that for one reason or the other, the situation is one that the Transport Department canít or wonít fix. News Five brought it up with operations officer of the department Tirso Galvez who will assume the post of Chief Transport Officer on Saturday. He told us that they are aware of the situation because they hear it on the news and get complaints at their office.

Tirso Galvez

Tirso Galvez, Operations Officer, Transport Department

ďWe should be calling a meeting shortly with the bus operators to look at their road service permits to see what they actually have and to see what they really are doing on the ground to regulate them and to set the proper schedule that we could put out for the general public so that the public can know exactly what time these buses will be running. In respect of the condition of the buses, we will start to enforce the issue of some of the things that they should have on their buses, for example the dirt receptacle, even the chairs for example, the seating capacity where they are saying that the seats are for three persons and should only be for two person for example, ensuring that they have good tires, spare tires and jacks in place. We will be addressing all those situations there. I know that the bus operators are asking for an increase in fares but we are telling them that we need for them to provide a better service before we can even address the matter of fares. I want to say at this time also that there are some bus operators that are increasing bus fares on their own. I want to say publicly that the Transport board has not authorized any increase in shares, so for those operators doing that we are advising them to stop that or if anybody has been charged in excess of what they have been charged before to make a complaint to the department. We need to get in in writing so that we can address the problem.Ē

Channel 5