United States Attorney
Middle District of Alabama
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Justice Department Settles with Florida Bus Companies Over Accessibility Violations
The Justice Department reached four settlement agreements with over-the-road bus companies in Florida in the last month, to ensure that bus transportation is accessible for people with disabilities. The settlements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are with Dynamic Tours & Transportation Inc., Alltour America Transportation, Jet Set Line Inc. and VIP’s Jet Tours Corp./Pegasus Transportation.
The settlements are the product of collaborative enforcement efforts between the Justice Department and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation . The agreements remedy violations by the bus companies, including failing to maintain wheelchair lifts in working condition, failing to file required reports regarding ADA compliance, and lack of staff training on accessibility requirements. The settlement agreements require the bus companies:
To comply with all ADA requirements for accessible service, and not exclude persons with disabilities from their transportation services;
To train all employees and contractors on the requirements of the ADA;
To properly maintain all wheelchair lifts (to the extent a company has lift-equipped buses); and
To file required annual reports with the FMCSA.
“People with disabilities must be able to count on accessible bus service that is equal to the service provided to others,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Rights Division.
“FMCSA will continue to work closely with the Department of Justice to enforce ADA compliance so that all travelers can enjoy destinations across America by way of commercial bus,” said Anne S. Ferro, Administrator of the Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Title III of the ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities by public accommodations, including small over-the-road bus companies. The Department of Transportation’s regulations implementing the ADA require that such companies perform regular maintenance checks to ensure that wheelchair lifts work, provide prompt accessible service with an alternative carrier if a small company does not have a lift-equipped bus, train their employees on accessibility requirements, and file annual accessibility reports with the FMCSA.
In the past year, the Justice Department has reached a total of 22 settlements with bus companies to ensure compliance with accessibility obligations.
People interested in finding out more about the ADA or these settlements can call the toll-free ADA Information Line at 800-514-0301 (TDD 800-514-0383) or access the ADA website at www.ada.gov .