By Nicholas Yeam
In today's hectic society, multi- tasking is a highly valued skill.
But evidently, that should not be applied to this SMRT bus driver who was photographed reading a newspaper while behind the wheel.
He read the paper when the bus stopped at a traffic light, said the passenger who took the picture.
The 18-year-old Ngee Ann Polytechnic student, who wanted to be known only as Mr Tan, said that he was on his way home to Yishun on bus service 167 when the incident took place at about 5pm on Monday.
Mr Tan took the photo when the bus was near Ngee Ann City area, but he said that the driver did not read the newspaper while the bus was moving or at any other traffic junction.
He said: "The bus was stationary at that time but he panicked a bit when the traffic light turned green and (he) had to rush to get the bus going again."
He said that though the bus was not packed, it "had enough people onit to fill most of the seats".
"It's outrageous because he really shouldn't be doing that. I was also annoyed because it's quite complacent of him to think that he could get away with reading the papers and think that nobody would notice when he's in a bus with so many passengers," he said.
When TNP contacted SMRT, a spokesman said that "SMRT views this seriously and are currently investigating the incident".
When asked about the training that these drivers go through, the spokesman said that "SMRT has an intensive training programme of up to nine weeks to ensure that all Service Leaders (SLs) are equipped with safe driving and customer service skills before they are allowed to perform their duties".
The spokesman added: "To qualify as a SL, candidates must have a Class 3 or 4 licence with a minimum of one-year driving experience; or the equivalent qualification for foreigners."
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