“Operation Hlokomela was created as an initiative of Santaco to ensure the safety of the millions of passengers that we transport every day. This year we have also extended the campaign to include the Eastern Weekend,” says MJ Msiza, President of Santaco.
“For us any life lost in an accident is one life too many and this makes Operation Hlokomela very important for us.”
Toyota has partnered with Santaco since the inception of this road safety programme in 2011 and has provided a fleet of locally produced vehicles to enable safety officers to travel to taxi ranks across the country to inspect taxis and test the skills of taxi drivers.
“This year was an important year for Toyota and the taxi industry,” says Dr Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota SA Motors.
“In 2012 we localised the assembly of the Ses’fikile at our Prospecton plant in KwaZulu-Natal. We were also recognised as the only taxi manufacturer to receive a full five star accreditation for safety and quality by the Independent Taxi Assessment Services (ITAS). These milestones, along with our support of Operation Hlokomela, are evidence of the importance of the taxi industry and the safety of its passengers to Toyota.”
Operation Hlokomela enjoys the support of the Road Traffic Management Corporation, the Department of Transport and all levels of law enforcement.
For this year’s campaign Toyota provided technical and safety training for Hlokomela safety inspectors and equipped them to further train other inspectors across the country.
Toyota has also created the technical and safety inspection sheets used by these inspectors. A duplicate of each completed sheet will be sent to Toyota’s engineers for further study and future improvement of the South Africa’s favourite taxi, the Toyota Ses’fikile.