Every day, millions of Americans wake up and travel by plane, train, or bus to their destinations. Many will board that vehicle and not think about safety. That’s because safety is DOT’s job, and it is one that we take seriously.
Yesterday, Deputy Secretary Porcari, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administrator Anne Ferro, and I met with over 50 special investigators from across the nation, each passionate about safety, who will lead the charge to step up FMCSA’s oversight of bus operators.
Each investigator was specially chosen from the many who applied, and brings a unique perspective and commitment to safety. In speaking with the group, many expressed their readiness to change attitudes within the industry and bring a lasting impact to the standard of bus safety.
We will leverage their experience and expertise, equip them with new tools and new strategies, and return them to the field to advance new best practices to ensure safety comes first and unsafe operators are shut down.
Fifty investigators from around the country gathered with FMCSA officials at DOT headquarters for the kick-off of their specialized training to utilize unique investigative techniques aimed at improving the safety of bus operators.
Secretary LaHood addresses the Special Investigators.
This is no easy task. FMCSA currently oversees the safety and compliance of 525,000 motor carriers, such as interstate buses, tractor trailers, and household goods movers. These include more than 4,000 motorcoach companies responsible for over 700 million passenger trips annually. In fact, more Americans travel by motorcoach each year than travel by airplane.
We all have a role to play in bus safety. Anyone considering a bus trip can make safe choices by using FMCSA’s SaferBus app, which is available on Android and Apple operating systems. This user friendly app gives riders a quick and free way to review a company’s safety record before buying a ticket or while waiting to board a bus.
In addition, FMCSA’s Look Before You Book website offers travelers the information they need to make smart decisions before booking a bus trip. FMCSA also offers a pre-trip checklist and a safety violation complaint hotline, 1-888-DOT-SAFT.
I am grateful for the work of our special investigators, our champions of safety, and look forward to the difference they’ll make when they hit the road later this spring.