The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has issued a civil penalty notice to Lehane’s Bus Service Inc. of New Castle, DE, for alleged federal motor carrier safety violations. The $83,120 fine was the result of an investigation by FMCSA’s Delaware Division into the school bus company’s safety compliance record.
According to the FMCSA, the bus service was cited for a number of safety violations, including employing a driver who tested positive for a controlled substance; failing to conduct periodic, random drug and alcohol testing; operating vehicles without the required federal minimum levels of insurance; and operating vehicles that had not been inspected for safety defects as federally required.
“As school buses return to the roads in communities across the country, it is imperative that every bus company and driver operates in full compliance with federal safety regulations,” said Rose A. McMurray, FMCSA Acting Deputy Administrator. “For the FMCSA and its state partners, enforcing safety standards and assessing civil penalties that keep unfit carriers and drivers off the road is critical to protecting the millions of students returning to their classrooms this school year.”
The fine and citation of Lehane’s came as a result of the FMCSA’s spring passenger carrier strike force initiative, Operation Safe Student, carried out in all 50 states and U.S. territories from May 8 to May 21, 2009. The goal of the strike force was to remove unsafe buses, motor coaches and other passenger carriers and drivers from the road, and to provide states additional funding to conduct roadside safety inspections.
Lehane’s will have an opportunity to contest the alleged violations and the fine.