July 30, 2015

Officers are here to help, membership comes first

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By Adhi Reddy, Transportation Division Vice President – Bus –  The year 2015 is a special one for our organization because we left our First SMART Convention as a united membership. Together, with one voice, we are a stronger body throughout the nation. All of our newly elected representatives from the 2014 conventions have now taken [...]

FMCSA starts committee to update bus driver training

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Feb. 10 announced the formation of a 26-member advisory committee that is tasked with updating classroom and new behind-the-wheel training requirements for professional truck and bus drivers. “Over the next 30 years, we’re going to be relying on trucks – and truckers [...]

SEPTA bus operators ink new two-year agreement

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Members of the SMART Transportation Division employed by Southeastern Pennsylvania Metropolitan Transportation Authority ratified Jan. 11 a 2.5-year agreement with the carrier. The contract, which is retroactive to April 1, 2014, and extends until Nov. 18, 2016, covers bus operators, trolley operators and conductors and operators on the Norristown High Speed Line. They are members [...]

At least 10 killed when prison bus hits train in Texas

PENWELL, Texas – At least 10 people were killed Wednesday when a bus carrying state prisoners skidded off an icy highway overpass in West Texas, slid down an embankment and collided with a passing train, a county sheriff said. The overpass on Interstate 20 was slick with ice Wednesday morning when the Texas Department of [...]

FMCSA to maintain random drug testing rates in 2015

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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported that the annual minimum random controlled substances testing rates for employees in safety sensitive positions, including tractor-trailer and bus drivers, will remain at 50 percent through 2015.  The agency’s decision to maintain the current testing rate was based on data from motor carrier industry controlled substance lab [...]

Sleep apnea should not cost operators jobs or pay

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Operators employed in the transit industry continue to experience difficult times in relation to obstructive sleep apnea, a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. Several types of sleep apnea exist, but the most common type is obstructive sleep apnea, which occurs when throat muscles intermittently relax and block [...]

Thank you for your support, I am here to assist you

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To each and every delegate of the SMART Transportation Division, I would like to thank you for electing me to the position of vice president of SMART’s bus department. My request to all SMART members is to please work with all of your newly elected officers at all levels of the organization. Keep all of [...]

FMCSA promotes safety belt use in kids’ contest

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WASHINGTON – On Nov. 1, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will kick-off the 2015 “Be Ready. Be Buckled.” student art contest organized by the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Belt Partnership. Open to students in kindergarten through sixth grade with relatives or sponsors in the commercial truck and bus industries, [...]

L.A. bus passenger tells driver: ‘I have ebola’

LOS ANGELES – Sheriff’s deputies were searching for a man Monday (Oct. 13) who made threats while traveling on a Metro bus through Lincoln Heights. According to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, a man and a woman boarded the bus from Line 33 around 1:45 p.m. at Venice Boulevard and Hoover Street. Read the [...]

DOT expands program to help vets get bus op jobs

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced today that its waiver program that helps experienced veterans and active duty personnel transition into civilian jobs as commercial truck and bus drivers has been expanded to all 50 states and the District of Columbia. “Our nation’s veterans deserve good-paying jobs [...]