We’ve all seen examples of poor driving, unsafe vehicles and badly-maintained buses. These issues become very important when you’re planning a motorcoach tour. How can you find out if your tour bus is really safe?
In the United States, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) monitors interstate bus and truck safety. If you will be on a bus that crosses a state line, you can find out about your chosen tour company or charter bus by visiting the FMCSA's Passenger Carrier Safety page. Choose “Click here to start your search” to get to the Find a Carrier page. Scroll down the page to Step 2, then enter your search parameters, such as carrier name or your ZIP code, in the boxes on the left side of the page. Your search will produce a list of carriers and you can choose the name of the company you’re checking.
For example, if you enter “U.S.” and “Greyhound” in the “State” and “Carrier Name” fields, you’ll be taken to a page that explains the FMCSA’s safety analysis and ratings processes and shows your search results at the bottom. Clicking on “Greyhound Lines, Inc.” will take you to the Greyhound data page, where you can review driver and vehicle safety statistics and see a graph that compares Greyhound’s statistics to the national average.
If you can’t find your tour company’s name, you may wish to telephone them and ask if they contract with a charter company for their motorcoach services. Chances are good that you’ll be able to find the charter company’s name in the FMCSA safety listings.
Tip: The FMCSA listings also include Canadian and Mexican companies if they also operate in the U.S.