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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

10 Potentially Fatal Risks for Motorcoach Operators

Remember, safety is in your hands 

Traveling by bus is one of the safest ways to get around, but crashes can end lives and ruin businesses. Safety is in your hands. Here are 10 frequent factors in recent bus crashes. Avoid making the same fatal mistakes.

  1. Distracted driving such as using mobile devices to text and talk, eating, drinking, checking maps, or doing paperwork while driving.

  2. Speeding.

  3. Customers, employers, or tour operators convincing drivers to stay behind the wheel for an unrealistic schedule, to reach a destination faster or to avoid overnight hotel stays.

  4. Full or part-time drivers with multiple jobs that do not maintain driving proficiency, report previous hours worked, or do not have enough rest to make the trip safely. 

  5. Using improper GPS devices that are meant for cars and failing to be aware of low clearance bridges and underpasses.

  6. Using the wrong kind of tires for a vehicle or route, driving on damaged or worn out tires, or having improper tire pressure.

  7. Poorly maintaining buses, including not keeping up with manufacturer recalls or mandated repairs.

  8. Failing to maintain awareness resulting in hitting pedestrians with bus mirrors.

  9. Having blocked or non-functioning emergency exits.

  10. Allowing party bus guests to behave unsafely, including hanging out of doors or out of rooftop openings.

The Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is serious about safety. Stiff new penalties apply for violating the safety regulations, including a $25,000 penalty for operating without proper authority.