26 de Nov de 2022

Nacional

Bus payouts may be invalid

PANAMA. Owners of the much feared diablo rojos that race each other through the city everyday may have found a new venue for their ‘spo...

PANAMA. Owners of the much feared diablo rojos that race each other through the city everyday may have found a new venue for their ‘sport’.

As an alternative for when they are taken out of circulation with the modernization of the city’s public transportation system, some should consider finally transferring their buses and the skills learned in the field from Transistmica and Calle 50 to a proper track.

Last Sunday, at the former race track of Rio Hato, a revved up and much more dangerous diablo rojo surprised spectators with elevated jumps.

But after witnessing the street antics of the buses perhaps the surprise was muted. The bus, belongs to the Nitro Circus show, and lost only the back door.

The act was part of the Freestyle Motocross Show, organized by MTV and Red Bull. Travis Pastrana drove a diablo rojo over a ramp and jumped over 5 mini motorcycles, before returning safely to the ground with only the loss of a door.

This new use for the buses could actually become more profitable than the $25,000 that the government is offering to encourage bus owners to take their vehicles out of circulation. And it wouldn’t be surprising if the buses are soon seen in international extreme sports programs, popular in the U.S. and other parts of the world.

And who knows? They might actually come to need a Plan B now that the legality of the $25,000 payment is being questioned.

“Movimiento 23 de Octubre”, a bus users group, is behind the lawsuit asking to nullify the government compensations.

In the lawsuit the group said it was illegal for the director of the Terrestrial Transportation and Transit Authority (ATTT), Heraclio Batista, to be authorized to hand out money to the 1,500 bus owners in the city because law 42 governing transportation does not establish that mechanism.

Fidel Justavino, the first bus owner to receive the $25,000 compensation for his diablo rojo, said he was not nervous as he waited for the third chamber of the Supreme Court to dictate whether the payment was legal or not.

According to Justavino if the Court believes it is illegal, the government will have a plan B. “They were the ones who created this, they will know what to do,” he said.

The head of the bus depot in Pedregal, Dionel Broce, who claims that none of the buses of his route have received indemnities, agrees with Justavino in that if the measure is found illegal, “that will be the government’s responsibility.”