Centralised training course for all new bus drivers
NEW bus captains will now have to go through an additional centralised training programme to obtain their licence, conducted by the Singapore Bus Academy which was officially opened yesterday.
The five-day Enhanced Vocational Licence Training Programme will cover foundational topics such as the public transport industry, omnibus drivers' vocational licence and regulations, bus ticketing system and common fleet management systems, customer service and safe driving.
It will complement public bus operators' existing training programmes for the Omnibus Driver's Vocational Licence - the industry requirement for public bus drivers.
The programme will be conducted in both English and Mandarin by in-house trainers, as well as those from the National Transport Workers' Union, SBS Transit and SMRT.
Senior Minister of State for Transport Josephine Teo noted that the academy is part of the strategy "to raise professionalism through enhanced training".
She added that the Land Transport Authority and the Employment and Employability Institute (e2i) will provide training grants to cover around two-thirds of the course fees for all local bus captains.
The first batch of 30 trainees will start the programme at the end of this month. One of the trainees excited to start the programme is 57-year-old Yeo Teng Lam, who is a new bus captain with SBS.
"I'm interested in the safe driving aspect," said the former project manager in the construction industry. "It raises awareness of the potential dangers and hazards so it benefits me as an individual too."
An estimated 2,000 new bus captains are expected to go through the programme every year.
The academy is located at the Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability in Jurong East.
It will provide more training programmes for bus captains and for other workers in the industry - such as technicians and planners - in the future.