The Netherlands: ‘Stint can hit the road again’
The Dutch Minister of Transport and Public Works, Cora Van Nieuwenhuizen (VVD), has decided that the Stint can hit the road again on some strict conditions. The once so popular ‘bolderkar’, as the vehicle is called in The Netherlands, is mainly used by daycare centers for children.
Accident in Oss
The Stint was banned from the roads after a severe accident in Oss, last year in September, in which four children died. In the meantime, the minister considers a particular driver’s license for exceptional vehicles like the Stint. The vehicles also have to be seen and approved by the Ministry of Transport and Public Works before they are allowed in traffic again. The investigations into the circumstances of the accident in Oss are still going on.
From now on, drivers of a Stint have to be 18 or older, and they need to have received a driving ability training. Users have to opt for the safest routes and stay as much as possible on the bicycle paths that are separated from road traffic.
No safer alternatives
Of course, similar accidents may never happen again, “but the Stint is a safe means of transport,” says Gjalt Jellesma of the lobby for childcare. “There are no safer alternatives.”
In the future, an independent commission will organize random checks to see whether daycare centers respect the rules about the safe route options. If they don’t, the Stint will be permanently forbidden. “So, we’re going to spur on everybody to respect the rules. It’s in everybody’s interest.”