Plans are underway for the development of a more effective safety programme for taxi drivers in the Virgin Islands.
The Taxi and Livery Commission along with the Department of Disaster Management and the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board (BVITB) are collaboratively working on this initiative which will include educating and training taxi drivers on fire suppression, emergency management and emergency preparedness. This safety programme will also be combined with the existing Taxi Academy programmes which include training in customer service, defensive driving and Virgin Islands history.
The Government has announced that some 700,000 cruise passengers are expected to visit the Territory this year and the objective of this collaborative effort is to provide drivers with the necessary skills and knowledge to better handle disasters that may occur on the road.
Minister for Communications and Works, Honourable Mark Vanterpool told public officers at a recent customer service seminar that excellent service has to become the norm in an economy that is driven by tourism.
Minister Vanterpool stated, “Cruise passengers have indicated through surveys and various means, that based on the experiences they have had when they came to the BVI, they want to come back to the British Virgin Islands perhaps more than most other places in the Caribbean… because the taxi drivers in the BVI have been good ambassadors for us in the Territory”.
The Taxi and Livery Commission and the BVI Tourist Board have been working together for several years and welcome the new relationship with the Department of Disaster Management to enhance the Virgin Islands product.