July 31, 2014

Local 1701 takes labor dispute to city council

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MONTEBELLO, Calif. – SMART Transportation Division Local 1701 bus members here July 9 picketed outside Montebello City Hall prior to and during a meeting of city council to bring attention to their dispute with city over wages, rest periods, meal periods and payment of pension contributions. Approximately 30 members attended the picket that was organized [...]

Bus travel gives other modes run for the money

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Buses are starting to give airlines, trains, and even cars a run for their money. With spiffed up coaches, internet reservations, and often significantly cheaper fares, bus travel is becoming an increasingly popular alternative to flying, taking the train and even driving your own car, according to a new study released Monday. “It’s a … [...]

FMCSA seeks electronic logbooks in bus industry

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) March 13 announced a proposal to require interstate commercial truck and bus companies to use Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) in their vehicles to improve compliance with the safety rules that govern the number of hours a driver can work. The proposed rulemaking [...]

Morr: Stop privatization, keep our tax dollars here

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By Bonnie Morr, Vice President, Bus –  In December, I attended a school bus summit in Washington hosted by the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO. Though the topics of discussion centered around school bus issues, many were pertinent to our global bus community. Whether we are operating a tour bus, transit bus, school bus, van [...]

First Student memo exposes incentives to cut corners

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News 4 has obtained a memo from the president of a huge school bus company telling its employees if they want to make extra money they need to cut serious corners. And that, employees told News 4, is at the root of all the dangerous problems we’ve been uncovering. Read the complete story at KMOV [...]

MBTA buses get live video technology

BOSTON – Homeland Security in Washington DC has awarded the MBTA about $7 million to outfit buses with the latest in live video technology. Sophisticated new 360-degree lenses embedded in the ceilings and walls of the buses will now capture everything. And on some buses, there will even be flat screens for passengers to see [...]

Feds get ‘aggressive’ against bus co. violators

In a fundamental shift in the way tour buses are regulated, the federal agency that oversees the companies is implementing a long-sought rule to aggressively go after and shut down those that repeatedly violate safety laws, endangering the lives of tour bus riders as well as motorists and passengers sharing the road. The move comes [...]

FMCSA extends medical cert requirement for bus ops

The Federal Motor Carrier Administration (FMCSA) Jan. 10 announced that it is extending by one year, until Jan. 30, 2015, a requirement that interstate commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders retain paper copies of their medical examiner’s certificate and continue to make the document available for review upon request at the roadside by federal and state [...]

FMCSA operation removes 52 unsafe bus companies

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced Dec. 12 that 52 bus companies and 340 vehicles were put out of business and removed from the road as a result of Operation Quick Strike, an eight-month intensified effort to shut down unsafe motorcoach companies. “Bus travel is increasingly popular [...]

Seat belts will be required on large buses

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New tour buses and buses that provide service between cities must be equipped with seat belts starting in late 2016 under a federal rule issued Wednesday, a safety measure sought by accident investigators for nearly a half century. Beginning in November 2016, all new motorcoaches and some other large buses must be equipped by manufacturers [...]