New Legislation Cracks Down on Intercity Buses

Intercity buses face new regulations as they continue to expand their services and compete for ridership, reports Susan Stellin.

Intercity bus travel is becoming more accessible than ever, especially due to the competition between low-cost companies like BoltBus and Megabus, who benefit from online ticketing systems and curbside pickups. And to top it all off? They offer "fares as low as a dollar between cities like Boston and New York."

However, despite being an inexpensive travel option, safety concerns have arisen. In an effort to revamp the bus system, legislation has introduced tougher enforcement through monitoring systems, driving-hour limits and shutting down unsafe bus operators, in order to ensure safety.

Issues with timeliness, crowding, and disorganization of pickup locations are among some of the customer complaints. In an effort to address these issues, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo signed a bill on August 17th "creating a permit system for intercity buses that will require companies to seek permission before designating a place to load or unload riders."

In addition, Congress has passed legislation directing the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to adopt many of the measures suggested by National Transportation Safety Board following recent deadly accidents. This, many hope, will help establish a more legible and predictable system, without raising "rock-bottom" fares.

Full Story: City to City, on the Cheap

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