Charter Bus Companies Face New Federal Safety Regulations
By Justin Udo
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A federal agency is issuing regulations aimed at making it easier for the government to shut down bus and truck companies with a pattern of safety problems. The Federal Motor Carrier Administration says the regulations give the agency authority to put out of business operators who have a history of problems.
There have been more than a dozen charter bus crashes over the last few years. It was in March 2011 when a charter bus traveling from New York to Philadelphia crashed along the New Jersey Turnpike near East Brunswick, killing a Montgomery County man, the bus driver, and injuring dozens of others (See Related Story).
The bus company responsible for the crash, Super Luxury Tours, was shutdown during Operation Quick Strike for violating federal insurance requirements.
Dan Ronan with the American Bus Association says now the Federal Motor Carrier Administration is getting help regulating the motor coach industry — as it tries to keep passengers safe from companies like Super Luxury Tours.
“FMCA now has greater authority to shut down motor coach companies that the Department of Transportation believes are chronic trouble makers,” Ronan says. “companies that break the rules, companies that do not comply with safety standards.”
Ronan says overall the motor coach industry is very safe, but there is small a group of companies causing the large number of deaths and injuries.
And while it make take a little time, Ronan advises commuters to do a little research before choosing a company.