FMCSA orders Pennsylvania passenger bus company out of service

By Greg Grisolano, Land Line staff writer | Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Pennsylvania bus company has been ordered out of service after an investigation by federal regulators found numerous safety violations.

Bus Go Bus, of Philadelphia, and its owner Qi Sheng “Sammy” Zhang have been declared an imminent hazard to public safety, according to a report issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

According to the FMCSA’s order, Bus Go Bus “fails to ensure that its motor coaches are systematically and properly inspected, repaired and maintained and meet minimum safety standards.”

“The carrier essentially has no maintenance and repair program and no systemic ability to determine if its vehicles are safe,” the report stated.

The report alleges that the bus company does not inspect safety doors, emergency windows or lighting and does not require drivers to prepare vehicle inspection reports.

“The carrier’s nonexistent and inadequate maintenance program substantially increases the risk of serious injury or death and is an imminently hazardous and potentially deadly situation for the carrier’s drivers and passengers and the motoring public,” the report stated.

Other violations include falsified on-duty status records, unqualified drivers, lack of medical certificates, no drug/alcohol testing and “widespread” instances of drivers speeding.

Zhang was previously prohibited from operating commercial motor vehicles in interstate or intrastate commerce in May of 2012, when he was operating Black Leopard Travel Inc.

“Despite being subject to the May 30, 2012 Order, Mr. Zhang operated and continues to operate Bus Go Bus Inc. In fact, Mr. Zhang affirmatively misrepresented to FM CSA his involvement in a motor carrier operation other than Black Leopard Travel Inc., asserting that he was not involved in motor carrier operations other than Black Leopard Travel Inc.,” the report stated.
 
Wednesday’s action is the 19th out-of-service order issued by FMCSA since the deployment in April of more than 50 “Operation Quick Strike” safety investigators targeting high-risk passenger carriers, and the 26th out-of-service order against a bus company this year. In the past five months, FMCSA has also revoked the operating authority of 25 additional bus companies following compliance review investigations that resulted in an “unsatisfactory” safety rating.
 
Since the beginning of 2013, FMCSA also has issued out-of-service orders to a total of 10 trucking companies, and has declared seven commercial driver's license holders as imminent hazards, blocking them from operating in interstate commerce.

A copy of the out-of-service order can be viewed here.

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