Fleet News

Minibuses ahead in safety game

MINIBUSES operated by schools, voluntary groups, health and local authorities are racing ahead of the law on seat belt legislation. A new RAC survey reveals that with at least 18 months to go before Parliament incorporates a European Commission directive to make passenger seat belts compulsory in all minibuses and coaches, 87% of public sector vehicles are already equipped.

While manufacturers generally fit seat belts as standard in new minibuses, 80% of operators surveyed were running vehicles at least three years old, indicating seat belts had been fitted retrospectively. The figures are in contrast to another RAC survey which showed five out of six minibuses hired from commercial operators would have failed an MoT test. The new survey shows service intervals for most public sector-owned minibuses average three-six months.

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