PHV driver on road for 24 hours to earn $753.47 causes concern: 'Is it safe for passengers?'

Submitted by Stomper Jovis

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A private-hire vehicle (PHV) driver claimed he earned more than $750 by driving for 24 straight hours, causing concern that he might have compromised his passengers' safety.

Stomper Jovis alerted Stomp to a Facebook post shared by the driver on May 12, which included a screenshot of his earnings.

"Okay, this is the result of my 24-hour non-stop driving challenge," said the driver.

He had earned a total of $753.47.

"Hmmm, I'm personally kind of disappointed with the result but nonetheless, I did my best."

After seeing the post, the Stomper said: "Apparently, PHV drivers are doing well. In a single day, a driver could earn up to $700?

"But more importantly, is it safe for passengers to be driven by someone who has been on the road driving non-stop for long hours? Such a selfish act that might lead to some sort of accident due to fatigue."

In November 2023, a contest to see who earn the most in 24 hours resulted in a Gojek driver being on the road for 22 straight hours to earn $1,017. This drew flak from netizens who said it put drivers, passengers and other road users at risk.

In response to a Stomp query regarding the contest, a Gojek spokesperson said: "Safety is a top priority for us and we do not encourage driver-partners to drive for long hours without taking sufficient breaks.

"Getting adequate rest is a crucial part of driving safely, and we have several initiatives in place to ensure our driver-partners are aware of safe driving practices."

To encourage drivers to get sufficient rest, Gojek introduced a feature on its iOS driver app to regularly remind drivers to take a break or go offline after they have been online for a certain number of hours.

"We will also continue exploring new ways to further encourage safe driving practices, in line with our commitment to keeping driver-partners and customers safe on the roads," said the spokesperson.

Similarly with Grab, its driver app has a “fatigue nudges” safety feature to reminds drivers to take a break when they’ve been driving for long hours.

During a drive, the app also collects mobile sensor data, such as accelerator, gyroscope, and GPS data from mobile devices. This information lets vehicle telematics detect driving habits such as harsh braking, acceleration, cornering, and unsafe lane changes.

Ministry of Manpower guidelines on preventing fatigue among drivers include recommendations to limit shifts to no more than 12 hours including overtime, and scheduled breaks such as 15 minutes for every two hours on the road.