Federal regulators shut down a total of 26 bus operators in late May for various safety violations. Three of those operators were based in Philadelphia. The bussing companies were cited for a variety of safety violations, including uninspected brakes, unlicensed drivers, and failing to provide drivers with mandatory rest periods. The bus operators being shut down, of which the Philadelphia carriers were only a fraction, carried a total of about 18,000 passengers daily along routes up and down I-95 between New York and Florida.
This crackdown came in response to three bus accidents occurring in early 2011 that killed 21 people. According to the group Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety, there were a total of 24 crashes, 34 deaths, and 467 injuries in 2011 alone.
In a June 1, 2012 Philadelphia Inquirer article written by Paul Nussbaum, the 26 operators were ordered to shut down immediately by federal regulators because they posed an “imminent hazard to the traveling public.”
The shut down also targeted companies with subsidiary operations, in order to ensure that the carriers did not merely switch names and continue normal operations as if nothing had happened. Of the 26 carriers ordered to shut down, 13 had been shut down before, including Super Luxury Tours, which was forced to close in March 2011 after a crash on the New Jersey turnpike killed the bus driver and a 21 year old passenger.
In addition to the three bus operators shutdown in Philadelphia, eight other Pennsylvania carriers were also shut down, including carriers in Delaware County, Lancaster, Wilkes Barre, and State College.