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Traveling by bus? Check the passenger policies

Published On: Jun 16 2014 08:37:29 PM CDT   Updated On: Jul 21 2014 09:13:57 PM CDT

After passengers on a bus run by an El Paso company were stuck on the side of the road for hours Sunday, ABC 7 is looking into what policies are in place for passengers in similar situations. ABC 7's Andrew J. Polk reports.

EL PASO, Texas -

     If you're planning on traveling this summer you might consider taking a bus, like many do every day in El Paso. But if you do, you'll want to make sure you know what happens if things go wrong.

     There are plenty of tour and charter buses that start and come through the Sun City on a daily basis. And while there are safety standards for things like vehicle maintenance, there are no national regulations when it comes to passenger comfort.

     For the passengers on one bus, it was a nine hour wait on the side of the road in Thousand Palms, California, before another bus arrived to let them continue on their journey Sunday.

     "It's really hot, we're just holding on, everybody, the kids, mostly," said one passenger. "More than anything, they're just here, waiting. We're just waiting to see what happens. They haven't told us anything if they're going to bring another bus or what."

     ABC 7 sister station KESQ said the breakdown was due to a transmission problem with the bus, which is operated by El Paso Bus Ride, based El Paso.

     ABC 7 asked El Paso Bus Ride about the problem, but they wouldn't comment over the phone and no one was at the house listed as their mailing address.
     Greyhound Lines, which has operations out of downtown El Paso, said they have policies in place to deal with breakdowns or even just passenger comfort issues.

     "We want to make sure they're not on the side of the road, if at all possible," said Myron Watkins, VP of customer experience for Greyhound. "We want to see if we can move the coach to a safe place, whether it be off the highway or to an establishment that may be open where we can provide food and drinks for the passengers' comfort."

     Some passengers ABC 7 spoke with at the downtown bus terminal said they hope a company would take the passenger conditions into consideration in the event of a breakdown, while moving quickly to get them moving again.

     "That they would do the best they could to get a bus there as fast as they could," said one waiting bus passenger. "That's what i would hope. That's about it - make it as convenient as they could while they're sitting there."

     So if you're planning some summer travel by bus, make sure to check with your company to see what happens if something goes wrong, or you could end up stuck out in the heat.


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