Nearly 20 years after joining the APSRTC as a driver, Ch. A. Rao (Narsipatnam Depot), exhibits the same zeal and devotion to duty as a new entrant normally does.

“I am a teetotaller. I don’t even take tea but drink coffee, may be once a week or so. I drive the Visakhapatnam – Narsipatnam Non-Stop bus from morning to evening and only eat curd rice for lunch as it is light on the stomach and allows me to concentrate on my driving,” he said at the inaugural of Road Safety Week Celebrations at the Maddilapalem City Depot here on Wednesday.

“In my opinion, driving is an art and the safety and comfort of passengers in the bus is uppermost in my mind, when I am behind the wheel.

A driver can race at high speeds, brake suddenly or drive at steady speed without frequent application of brake and causing sudden jerks. Only when a driver concentrates fully on his job, can he ensure the safety and comfort of passengers,” he said.

No wonder, Mr. Rao holds an ‘Accident-free record’ during his 19 years and four months with the corporation, so far.

“I come to the depot, one hour before my duty time and check the bus thoroughly. I go for a trial within the depot premises before taking it out on to the road. When entering the National Highway, I remain cautious and watch out for pedestrians, two-wheelers and other vehicles and then proceed,” says another driver U.Y. Rao (Maddilapalem Depot), who holds an accident-free record of 28 years and is due for retirement in five months.

“I do not brake suddenly at junctions as vehicles coming from behind would hit the bus and it could result in injuries or even death of two-wheeler riders. When the corporation has entrusted me with the responsibility of a bus worth Rs. 20 lakh it is my duty to safeguard it,” he says.

News Source : The Hindu