Feds Shut Down Second Discount Bus Line

0 comments

Posted on 9th March 2013 by gjohnson in Uncategorized

, , , , , , ,

Continuing their crackdown, federal officials have shut down a second discount Chinatown bus company for alleged safety violations. And U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) didn’t mince any words about it.

In a press release Friday, DOT said it had ordered Ming An Inc. of New York City closed down because it was “an imminent hazard to public safety.”

http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/about/news/news-releases/2013/New-York-City-Bus-Company-shutdown.aspx

A week before, in a similar move, DOT closed another low-cost interstate bus carrier, Boston-based Fung Wah Bus Transportation.

http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/about/news/news-releases/2013/FMCSA-Shuts-Down-Fung-Wah.aspx

In terms of Ming An, in a statement U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, “We are committed to removing unsafe bus and truck companies from our highways and roads. We will not let up and we will not slow down. Companies that ignore our safety regulations will not be tolerated.”

DOT’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) investigated Ming An’s operations and vehicles and “concluded that the carrier operated in blatant disregard for federal safety regulations,” the DOT press release said.

“Investigators found that Ming An failed to conduct pre-employment drug and alcohol testing and allowed unqualified drivers to operate its vehicles in an unsafe manner with its drivers receiving numerous citations for speeding in excess of 15 miles per hour over posted speed limits,” the release said.

And that’s not all.

FMCSA also said that Ming An didn’t require it drivers to maintain log books or conduct vehicle safety inspections, as required by federal regulations. Investigators also found that the company lacked a systematic vehicle inspection, repair and maintenance program.

As well, inspections of Ming An’s buses and vans found that many had been modified with after-market seats in violation of federal safety requirements.

The FMCSA order shutting Ming An also said that the violations and conditions of operations substantially increase the likelihood of serious injury or death to Ming An’s drivers, passengers and the motoring public.

“This is a company that operates unsafely,” FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro said in a statement. “It frequently uses part-time, unqualified drivers, and often ignores basic safety maintenance and operating standards.”

A copy of the imminent hazard out-of-service order can be viewed at http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/documents/about/news/2013/Ming-An-IH.pdf.

 

Discount Bus Company Shut Down By Federal Officials

0 comments

Posted on 1st March 2013 by gjohnson in Uncategorized

, ,

After a year that was filled with fatal accidents involving discount buses, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Friday shut down Boston-based Fung Wah Bus Transportation, which runs discount buses from Boston to New York.

http://www.dot.gov/briefing-room/fmcsa-shuts-down-fung-wah-bus-transportation

The action was taken by DOT’s  Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) using new authorities given to it under the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), transportation officials said in a press release .

“Bus companies that jeopardize public safety and refuse to cooperate with our investigators have no place on the road, and now, thanks to our additional authority, we can take them off,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement.  “Safety is our highest priority, and we will continue to do all we can to ensure that unsafe bus companies are not on our roads.”

Earlier Friday, Fung Wah stopped cooperating with FMCSA safety investigators and blocked further access to company safety records.

Under provisions contained in MAP-21, signed into law by President Obama last July, FMCSA may revoke the operating authority registration of a motor carrier that fails to comply with an administrative subpoena or a letter demanding release of company safety records.  This is the first case of FMCSA exercising this new provision to revoke a motor carrier’s federal operating authority.

“We will not hesitate to immediately shut down a bus or truck company that ignores safety regulations and puts innocent lives at risk,” FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro said in a statement.  “We will employ every tool we have to take unsafe commercial drivers, vehicles and entire companies off the road anywhere in the county at any time.”

On Tuesday, FMCSA ordered Fung Wah to immediately provide its entire fleet of 28 motor coaches for thorough and detailed safety inspections by qualified inspectors, DOT said in its press release.  FMCSA’s safety investigators had continued their examination of Fung Wah’s operations through the rest of the week in order to consider further action against the company as a whole in addition to ordering its buses out of service.

Fung Wah has a history safety violations and fines, according to the Associated Press.

http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/2013/03/01/feds-revoke-license-for-fung-wah-bus-service/UP9Tes7YEbwhLlGaVxvamL/story.html

The bus company posted a message about DOT’s actions on its website.

http://www.fungwahbus.com/default.html

“Fung Wah Bus is suspending all buses service to compliances a requested by US Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration for inspections and repair services,” the post said.

“Fung Wah bus will resume buses service soon after an inspection and repair service is complete by inspectors. Please call us at 212-925-8889 or email us at eticket@fungwahbus.com if you have any questions. All e-ticket will be refund.”