Great Western Coffee Shop

All across the Great Western territory => Buses and other ways to travel => Topic started by: grahame on September 06, 2021, 11:27:10 am



Title: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: grahame on September 06, 2021, 11:27:10 am
From the Stoke Sentinel (https://www.stokesentinel.co.uk/news/stoke-on-trent-news/girl-16-to-drive-tractor-5843003)

Quote
Girl, 16, 'to drive tractor to sixth form' in school bus seats row

Well ... if tractors can be driven from the age of 16, it makes a point and microsense - if not macrosense!


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: broadgage on September 06, 2021, 11:50:13 am
What about an electric scooter ? not the stand on type, but the type that resemble a motorbike, electric power instead of petrol.



Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: Ralph Ayres on September 06, 2021, 12:05:48 pm
The arrangement does seem to have fallen foul of some well-intentioned but in this case counterproductive legislation, the council rep not helping by trotting out a wishy-washy statement that repeats what everyone knows already and fails to explain the reasons at all clearly.


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: Bmblbzzz on September 06, 2021, 12:34:59 pm
So it seems school buses are only provided up to age 16. Why?


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: grahame on September 06, 2021, 12:42:22 pm
So it seems school buses are only provided up to age 16. Why?

It may be to do with "little monsters" turning into "big monsters" on their 16th Birthday.  From https://www.ucheck.co.uk/dbs-checks-for-under-18s/  talking about changes in 2015:

Quote
Under these new rules, children over 16 must undergo a DBS Check – but children under 16 are not allowed to.




Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: stuving on September 06, 2021, 12:58:44 pm
So it seems school buses are only provided up to age 16. Why?

Free school transport started with the 1944 education act, and the age limit of 16 covered the new minimum school-leaving age of 15 and the usual part-year at age 15. I'm not sure why sixth-formers didn't need it - but I was already cycling by that age.

Since then the school-leaving age has gone up more than once, and now there are these rules about accessible buses and paying passengers, but the free transport rules have not changed to match. It's not the first case of administrative or legislative dissonance, and I doubt it will be the last.


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: Bmblbzzz on September 06, 2021, 04:46:40 pm
Well exactly. It's intended as transport to school.


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: eXPassenger on September 06, 2021, 05:35:52 pm
The council has only been required to provide school busses for children in compulsory education where specific conditions such as distance and lack of footpaths apply..  Many councils will sell spare seats on school busses to 6th formers but this is entirely dependent on the council and the availability of spare places. I can see that the changes from covid have reduced flexibility and meant that there are no available places.


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: broadgage on September 07, 2021, 03:08:56 am


Very silly rules IMHO, are the older ones really going to sexually interfere with the younger ones, on a bus in view of others, and watched by CCTV ?
Remembering that they will be in the same school buildings together, without any criminal record checks.
And that no criminal record checks are needed to travel on an ordinary bus, that may be conveying younger children to school or otherwise.


Title: Re: The social importance of providing buses for EVERYONE - not just the entitled
Post by: stuving on September 07, 2021, 10:35:35 am
This is given as the real reason for this problem in the article, though the council official's quote does not confirm that:
Quote
Now the council has decided not to reinstate the scheme, unless it is persuaded otherwise over the next six weeks.

It is due to recently published guidance on the impact of Public Service Vehicles Accessibility Regulations (PSVAR) on Home to School Transport.

PSVAR only allows seats to be sold on vehicles, with more than 22 seats, if it is wheelchair accessible. But, the majority of the vehicles currently used by the council do not comply with this.

This all comes down to the pre-existing definitions of the different species of bus/coach operation in the regulations, which are used in the PSVAR regulations. These, as is customary, are based on criteria that seemed to define the right categories at the time but were and are not the really important ones. In this case it turns out that whether passengers are carried "at separate fares" matters, and that depends on the details of the contract with the council where they pay the whole cost. But, according to this legal guidance from transportlawyer.co.uk (https://www.transportlawyer.co.uk/news/psvar-accessibility-for-coaches-from-1st-january-2020-when-do-the-rules-apply/):
Quote
The general position is that where transport is provided to the user free of charge (which is the case for a number of schoolchildren who are eligible for free travel), then the regulations do not apply.  However, it is not uncommon for local authorities to sell spare seats on vehicles to fee-paying passengers.  Where this is the case, a separate fare is paid, thus the journey will fall in-scope (assuming that the other features of the journey make it a local or scheduled service – which, for many home to school journeys is likely to be the case).  It only requires one passenger paying a separate fare to require the vehicle to comply with the regulations.

Apparently DfT are pondering a further transitional exemption.



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