Go-Jek Driver who filmed and uploaded video may face actions from LTA

The Go-Jek Driver who filmed and uploaded a video of the confrontation with the rider may face possible actions from the Land Transport Authority (LTA).

Just in case you missed out on the viral private-hire video in Singapore.

What happened

The Go-Jek driver shared the 7-min clip on social media, saying that the female rider was upset that he could not avoid the ERP gantries.

The ride was from Bishan and headed towards Coleman Street in town around 7 am on Tuesday.

The driver asked her “How to avoid ERP?”, adding that the rider kept repeating that he was trying to cheat her. When quizzed on the preferred route to avoid ERP, the rider was unable to direct him.

The driver decided to resolve the issues at a nearby police station. When the car came to a stop, the rider claimed that she was locked in the car and the driver had the intention to kidnap her.

Aftermath

The Straits Times reported that Go-Jek had informed the driver that there was “nothing wrong” with what he did and that the company “won’t do anything to him”

Possible actions from LTA

The video filmed and uploaded by the driver may have fallen foul of LTA regulations. LTA had introduced stricter rules governing the use of inward-facing camera on June 22, 2018. The guidelines complement the Personal Data Protection Commission’s (PDPC) Advisory Guidelines on in-vehicle recordings.

Some of the key guidelines of the rules of inward facing cameras

  • Public service vehicles must obtain LTA’s approval to install the inward-facing camera.
  • Approved installations must be carried out at LTA-authorised installation centres.
  • The device must not have any audio recording function so that the passenger’s conversations are not recorded.
  • Vehicles with the device installed must affix a notice notifying passengers of the presence of the device in the vehicle. In addition, booking service operators must inform commuters if a vehicle installed with an inward-facing camera is being dispatched to the rider.
  • Access to the footage will also be restricted to government agencies and authorised personnel for the purpose of investigations and enforcement.

Under the Road Traffic Act, LTA will impose the penalties to any person found liable for offences relating to the unauthorised installation of inward-facing camera and the unauthorised access of the visual recordings.

a.            A fine up to $1,000, or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months or both upon conviction. In the case of a second or subsequent offence, a fine up to $2,000, or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or both upon conviction.

b.            For taxi and PHC drivers – 21 demerit points, which may lead to the revocation of the driver’s vocational licence under the Chauffeured Private Hire Car and Taxi Driver’s Vocational Licence Demerit Points System.

c.             For drivers of private hire buses, excursion buses and school buses – LTA may revoke their vocational licences.

It seems likely that the inward-facing camera that was used to film the incident did not comply with the rules set out by LTA.

commercial Car insuranceRigid governing rules need to be changed 

Incidents like this are not isolated. Confrontations between drivers and riders do not happen every day but they do happen once in a while.

Drivers are encouraged to install the inward-facing camera to safeguard their own interest in the event of a conflict like this. They should only install it at LTA-authorised installation centres that meet the requirements set out by LTA.

However, the rigid governing rules need to be tweaked to protect driver’s interest too.

Can you imagine what would have happened to the poor Go-Jek driver if there were no audio recording? Most disputes between driver and rider are a war of words and what good would the recording serve if you cannot hear what is happening.

Although there are rules in place, the natural reaction for any driver would be to start recording when things start to turn sour. The risk of being penalised supersede the risk of being accused of something you have not done.

Let’s hope common sense prevails and hope this driver will not have to face any actions. He has behaved professionally throughout this whole ordeal where many others would have reacted worse in this situation.