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House calls for more frequent school bus inspections

First Published      Last Updated Feb 23 2017 01:02 pm

After school buses performed relatively poorly on random inspections, the Utah House voted Wednesday to require more frequent checkups. It comes after representatives voted last week to eliminate all safety inspections on other non-commercial passenger vehicles.

It voted 74-0 to approve final passage of SB40, the school-bus bill, and sent it to Gov. Gary Herbert for his signature or veto.

Rep. Eric Hutchings, R-Kearns, the House sponsor of the bill, said school buses now are inspected randomly — resulting in checking about one of every five buses annually.

Of those that are inspected, he said one of every five fail and have mechanical problems serious enough that they should not be on the road.



He said the bill would require all school buses to be inspected every year. On top of that, random inspections would continue.

"We want to take it up a notch" for safety, Hutchings said.

That comes after the House last week voted to eliminate all inspections on non-commercial passenger vehicles, with supporters arguing that they don't make much difference with safety and that eliminating them could save money for drivers. That bill, HB265, is pending in the Senate.

Also on Wednesday, the House passed — and sent to the governor — SB90 on a 61-13 vote to waive fines on tickets for safety or emissions violations if the problems are fixed within two weeks.

— Lee Davidson

 

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