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Transport Authority revokes 15 driving schools’ license

The Addis Ababa Transport Authority revoked the licenses of 15 driving schools, while suspending their permit and setting a deadline of three months for 33 others to show improvement or else close shop.  
Only 10 driving schools out of 58 were allowed to continue operating, after being warned by the Authority to improve. As the number of cars in Addis increases, and with it the number of traffic accidents, it has become imperative that people learn to drive better.
The number of driving schools has recently increased significantly. Currently, there are about 60 driving schools in Addis Ababa, with the number due to increase in the near future with mounting interest from the private sector.
According to a survey conducted by the Addis Ababa Transport Authority, almost all of the 58 driving schools failed their evaluation, because the sector focuses solely on expansion rather than the provision of quality education.
The survey, which took a year, mainly centered on driving schools licensed in the city.
After the evaluation, schools were classified according to their score as either extremely low, low or relatively satisfactory.
The Authority then revoked the licenses of 15 driving schools that scored extremely low [under 60 percent]. It also temporarily suspended the operations of 33 schools which scored below 70 percent, setting a deadline of three months for improvement.
According to reliable sources, only 10 of the 58 schools (about 15 percent) scored above 70 percent and were allowed to continue their operations, though with a final warning to upgrade their standards. Nevertheless, quite a few owners and managers of driving schools in the city that Capital approached publicly denied hearing from the Authority. “I know the survey was being conducted and I have heard many driving schools need to improve because they don’t spend enough time correcting the errors students make and that traffic accidents are on the rise and has become a serious issue,” a school owner told Capital. “But I haven’t officially received any findings of the survey or of the Authority’s decision based on the results of the findings,” he said. “Like most people, what I have heard comes from indirect sources,” he added.
Meanwhile, reliable sources told Capital that this measure came as a result of the increasing number of traffic accidents in the city causing deaths, injuries and loss of property. According to data from 2011/12, almost one out of six deaths was caused by traffic accidents in the city.
More than 332 people died and 1,732 people were injured in traffic accidents in 2010/11.  In the same period, the city lost property worth 46 million birr.