Drivers who transport people have a much higher duty of care to other drivers. This is because a bus operator is generally thought of as a common carrier. A common carrier is any business which is responsible for transporting people or goods for a profit.
Therefore, if Metro does not repair its buses, properly inspect their fleet, or appropriately train and supervise their drivers, they may be in violation of their duties as a common carrier. Failure to abide by legally mandated duties may subject them to liability and any applicable damages.
The FMCSA and other California state agencies are responsible for enforcing regulations to minimize accidents involving commercial buses. Such regulations include, but are not limited to:
- Training and licensing for all commercial bus drivers.
- Limits on how many hours a bus driver can work.
- Blood alcohol level limits and drug testing.
- Regular maintenance and inspections of commercial buses.