RAWALPINDI: The Regional Transport Authority (RTA) in Rawalpindi has directed the owners of all private ambulances in the city to register their vehicles with Rescue 1122 within a fortnight.
RTA officials have already put up banners outside three public hospitals in the garrison city, urging the private ambulance owners to register their vehicles with the emergency service.
In case the ambulances fail to register themselves, they will not be allowed to operate in the city.
A Rescue 1122 official explained that the Punjab government had decided to register private ambulances as there was no unified record on their numbers or activities.
He said that the government had also been receiving complaints about exorbitant fares charged by private ambulance services. He said that the government wanted to regulate the charges demanded by these private services to carry the injured or the dead.
He further said that registration of these services would also help the district administration keep track of data on the companies and people involved in these services.
He added that the government was concerned by the possible use of ambulances by terrorist groups.
RTA Secretary Khalid Yamin Satti said that the government had ordered registration of all private ambulances in order to compile data.
He added that none of the volunteer services operating in the city, including reputable ones such as Edhi, were registered with the government.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 30th, 2016.