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First “microbus” unveiled – but it’s a “Johnny No Mates

Plans to change Thailand’s notorious minivans for swanky new “microbuses” have got off to a very sluggish start.

The minivan operators – infamous for running the speedy and accident ridden services – have been slower than slow to meet deadlines.

The first minibus that starts operation today will not have any friends – there will be just ONE on the road.

The department of land transport had requested that all operators of minivans older than 10 years be changed for the new 20 seater or larger microbuses up to 30 seats.

Ratchaburi-Krungthep Khon Song Co Ltd are the only company so far to do this. They are changing one of their fleet of two that will run between the Thai capital and Ratchaburi.

This is a 20 seater. The fare will be 67 baht for the 99 kilometer trip.

Their other minivan is less than ten years old so will remain in service.

Chertchai Sanansrisakhorn of the Department of Land Transport said that reaction to the changes had been slow and this was only one minivan registered to be changed from October 1 to October 6.

The department want to see all minivans phased out on stopping routes out of Bangkok within 300 kilometers of the capital.

The new microbus is fitted with an ABS braking system and GPS tracking.

Thai VisaDaily News

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