The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration on Thursday, June 9, declared Georgia-based JCT Motor Coach Inc. an imminent hazard to public safety and ordered the bus company to cease all intrastate and interstate transportation services immediately. FMCSA says it took this action after finding that the company, which provided charter bus service in the Southeast, was attempting to evade a previous out-of-service order by operating under a different name, JT’s Travel & Charter.
The imminent hazard order applies to all officers and future companies affiliated with both JCT Motor Coach Inc. and JT’s Travel & Charter Inc. ” If you are an unsafe, illegal bus company attempting to dodge federal safety standards and place passengers at risk by operating under a different name, we will find you and shut you down,” says U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.
FMCSA says its original out-of-service order issued to JCT Motor Coach Inc. was the result of a comprehensive compliance review that found numerous significant safety violations by the company, including intentionally falsifying vehicle maintenance records; failing to ensure its vehicles were regularly inspected, repaired and maintained; using drivers with positive drug and alcohol testing results; using medically unqualified drivers; and failing to comply with federal hours-of-service requirements.
FMCSA can declare a commercial motor carrier, including a bus company, to be an imminent hazard if it finds that the carrier’s operations pose a substantial likelihood of serious injury or death. “This case is an example of FMCSA’s zero-tolerance approach to bus companies that try to mislead the public and violate the law by reincarnating under different names,” says FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro. “These bus companies and their owners have no place operating on our roads.”