Community transport operator fined

DANSA reported to have used Section 19 buses on local authority school contract

Neath-based DANSA Integrated Community Transport is reported to have been fined £600 for using two Section 19 buses on a local authority school contract.

A statement from South Wales Police, whose officers made the arrest, said: “South Wales Police regularly carries out spot checks to ensure that drivers and vehicles being used for school transport are compliant. The matter concerning two vehicles used at Blaendulais Primary School in March is ongoing and therefore it would be inappropriate to comment at this time.”

Vice-chair of CPT Cymru’s bus commission, Bev Fowles, was aware of the incident. He mentioned an operator has to be extremely cautious not to accidentally send a Section 19 vehicle out on a commercial service. Bev is from South Wales Transport, an operator also based in the Neath area. He said: “At the end of the day, running a Section 19 vehicle on a commercial contract is illegal. There is a place for community transport, but when a community transport operator oversteps the line, the situation flares. I don’t think anybody would deny that in certain areas there is a need for community transport and long may it last. But when it is stretched and abused, that’s when there’s a problem.”

Attempts by Bus and Coach Buyer to contact DANSA about the incident did not yield a response at the time of going to press.

DANSA is an amalgamation of the former DVPCT (Dulais Valley Community Transport) and BWSTLER (serving the Swansea area). DANSA (Dulais, Afan, Neath, Swansea and Amman valleys) is a membership based not-for-profit organisation and operates cars, MPVs and minibuses. Its website says the vehicles are driven mainly by paid staff, who are fully MiDAS trained with many years’ experience in delivering community transport services. It also uses volunteer drivers.

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