April 23, 2012 | Issue #121

FMCSA Shuts Down Oklahoma Operator

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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has declared Heartland Charters & Tours and its principals an imminent hazard to public safety. The Oklahoma-based, interstate passenger bus company was ordered to immediately shut down its operations.

"Safety is our top priority. We will take swift action against any unsafe bus company that places passengers and other motorists at risk," said Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood.

FMCSA placed Heartland Charters & Tours out-of-service after an extensive review of the company's operations found multiple hours-of-service, vehicle maintenance, and controlled substance and alcohol testing violations.

Safety investigators discovered that the company did not conduct pre-employment drug screenings of its drivers and failed to use properly qualified drivers, putting the public at risk.

"FMCSA is serious about getting unsafe bus companies off the road," said FMCSA Administrator Anne S. Ferro. "We will continue to use every resource within our current authority to protect the traveling public and make our roads safer."