Tayside and Central Scotland

Coach operator 'breached driver fatigue rules'

A Dundee coach operator has been disqualified for two years after breaching rules combating driver fatigue.

Kevin McDonald, trading as River Tay Executive Travel, had his operator's licence suspended by Scotland's Traffic Commissioner.

A public inquiry found that proper systems were not in place to ensure journeys were properly recorded.

The company's transport manager and four drivers were given warnings.

River Tay Executive Travel operated five coaches from its premises in Wester Gourdie Industrial Estate.

The industry regulator said it had found "numerous instances" of employees driving for more than four and a half hours without a break.

The ruling will take effect from 31 May.

In a written decision, Traffic Commissioner Joan Aitken said Mr McDonald had breached his "licence undertakings in relation to drivers' hours and tachograph regulations".

'Omissions and failings'

Miss Aitken said: "He has not had in place proper systems to ensure that journeys were properly recorded, that drivers were taking breaks and rest when required to do so on occasions.

"This operator's drivers were not recording their hours accurately.

"The day of the coach driver is not simply one of turning the engine on and driving and then taking rest or breaks, but involves many other tasks and duties."

Miss Aitken said the ruling was a reminder to the industry that hours and tachograph rules were in place to make sure coach drivers were "fresh and rested and that they do not fall asleep at the wheel".

Referring to the warnings given to four drivers, the report said: "They have brought such on themselves by their omissions and failings to make proper records and to take breaks and rest when they should have done."

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