We thank Mr Ortega Gerard James for his letter (Tweak approach to vocational licensing of private-hire car drivers; May 9).
To protect commuter interests and ensure driver safety, drivers wishing to provide chauffeured services are required to apply for and obtain a Private-Hire Car Driver's Vocational Licence (PDVL).
Applicants are required to undergo the relevant training to acquire knowledge of and pass requisite tests on road and passenger safety, and the regulations for chauffeured services, among others.
The language requirement, curriculum, skills required and passing marks for the PDVL are similar to that of the Taxi Driver's Vocational Licence.
The Land Transport Authority regularly reviews the PDVL training and test syllabus to ensure that they remain relevant and up to date.
As part of our regular review, we have worked with the test centres, the Singapore Taxi Academy (STA) and the Employment and Employability Institute, to place more focus on the skills needed for chauffeured services and remove questions on counter-terrorism and health.
However, these topics will still be covered as part of the training curriculum, as it is essential for the drivers to understand the importance of their role in counter-terrorism efforts in Singapore, and the occupational health risks that can arise from long hours of driving.
Applicants who need help passing the tests are encouraged to participate in remedial classes, which are regularly conducted by the STA and ComfortDelGro Taxi training centres.
Director Public Transport Promotion and Services
Land Transport Authority