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Gas-operated transport: danger or no danger?

By Mariam Chanishvili
Wednesday, July 20
The Tbilisi Mini-Bus Company – which operates about 2,500 mini-busses in the capital city – has dismissed statements that they have more than 100 gas-operated marshrutkas which are a threat to the safety of passengers.

The company says they operate “fewer than 100” marshrutkas using gas and all such vehicles are checked by relevant agencies.

The Mini-Bus Company made the statement in response to allegations of the President of the Georgian National Automobile Federation, Shalva Ogbaidze, who believes that gas-operated marshrutkas are “extremely dangerous for passengers, as they are tantamount to travelling bombs.”

Tbilisi Mini-Bus Company Spokesperson Natia Mikiashvili claims that all the gas-operated marshrutkas are checked by relevant safety agencies and the company takes “full responsibility” for them.

She did not specify, however, exactly how many gas-operated marshutkas serve passengers daily.

Meanwhile, Tbilisi City Hall started monitoring functioning of air-conditioning systems in marshrutkas.

Tbilisi Mayor Davit Narmania has assigned a special group to monitor the use of conditioning system in the transport in response to allegations that drivers are refusing to switch on cooling systems.

The team has already started working and the sanctions will be taken against disobedient drivers.

However, some drivers told local media in private talks the company told them to switch on the system only in case if passengers demanded this. Their statements were dismissed by the company.