Railway Bureau struggles to recruit safety inspectors

Taipei, May 29 (CNA) Taiwan’s railway bureau is struggling to recruit rail safety inspectors due to unattractive salary offers amid the government’s efforts to improve rail travel safety after two fatal accidents in the last three years.

The office, which was set up by the Ministry of Transport and Communications in 2018, plans to hire 42 staff since last year but has only hired four so far, the chief said on Sunday. of the Wu Sheng-yuan (伍勝園) office.

In the latest recruitment wave that ended last week, the office had 30 vacancies, which attracted 41 applicants, Wu said.

The office eventually hired five people, but three decided to decline the offer, citing the salary as not meeting their expectations, according to Wu.

While underpayment was to blame for the low interest rate, Wu also said the fact that inspectors are neither considered civil servants nor under permanent employment contracts was also a problem.

Rail Safety Inspectors must examine on-site rail infrastructure and services to ensure compliance with regulations, as well as to identify safety deficiencies and propose corrective actions to prevent similar occurrences from occurring. reoccur in the future.

Inspectors should assess not only the railway system run by the Taiwan Railways Administration, but also high-speed trains, forest railways and sugar railways in the future, the bureau said. .

The job requires a high level of expertise, but has a starting salary of around NT$56,000 (US$1,900) per month, while a senior inspector, who must have at least 10 years of work experience in the field, is only paid about NT$70,000. , he said.

However, people with similar experience as a senior inspector can enjoy a monthly salary of more than NT$100,000 if they work for the Taiwan Transportation Safety Board (TTSB) under the Executive Yuan, according to the head of the board. Young Hong (楊宏智).

Wu said he suggested introducing the TTSB salary standard for bureau inspectors, but said the Executive Yuan rejected it saying the proposal would “cause unfair treatment” without giving further details.

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