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TOUGH LINE WITH BUS & COACH OPERATORS TO CONTINUE

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The increased number of bus and coach operators called to disciplinary public inquiries in 1995-96 was maintained d...
The increased number of bus and coach operators called to disciplinary public inquiries in 1995-96 was maintained during 1996-97, according to the annual reports of the traffic commissioners have been published.

The commissioners called a total of 215 cases to public inquiry. In

30 cases, they revoked the operating licence of the operator; they

also suspended 24 licences, and in 73 cases reduced the number of

vehicles which the operator is authorised to run.

Traffic commissioners also considered seven per cent more conduct

cases involving bus and coach drivers in 1996-97 compared to the

previous year. The reports also show a small decrease (four per

cent) in the number of bus and coach operator licences in issue, down

to a figure of 7,171. This ends a seven year run of increases. The

total number of vehicles licensed is 83,253.

The number of applications for licences fell by 49 per cent. This is

mainly attributable to the introduction of continuous licensing on 1

January 1996 which has meant that operators no longer need to apply

for a new licence every five years.

Applications to register, vary or cancel bus service registrations

remained largely static, indicating stability in the provision of bus

services, although with some regional variations.

NOTES

1. Traffic commissioners are independent statutory authorities

appointed by the secretary of state for each of the six traffic areas

in Great Britain. Their responsibilities include the licensing of

operators of public service vehicles and the registration of local

bus services. They also exercise a disciplinary function in respect

of holders of entitlement to drive passenger carrying vehicles (buses

and coaches).

2. The traffic commissioners are provided with administrative

support by staff at six traffic area offices.

3. The annual reports of the traffic commissioners for 1996/97

are available from the Traffic Area Network Unit, Zone 2/07,

Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, Great

Minster House, 76 Marsham Street; London SW1P 4DR, priced£2.

Cheques and Postal Orders should be made payable to the Department of

Environment, Transport and the Regions and accompany all orders.

4. The annual reports of the traffic commissioners on the

licensing of operators of heavy goods vehicles are also published

today (see Press Notice No.193).

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