What price would you place on a child’s safety?
We live in a society which has high expectations. The tolerance shown by prior generations is shifting and mediocrity is no longer being accepted by the general public. Put simply, nowadays people expect more! They no longer expect good service, they expect great service. With this in mind, when booking coach hire for students, do you think parents expect their children to travel with the cheapest operator or the safest operator?
As coach operators we understand the responsibility placed on decision-makers when trying to source a reputable transport provider. The damage caused by 'cowboys' and 'faceless brokers‘ masquerading as coach operators who simply vanish, slithering into the night when passengers are let down or injured, places enormous pressure on the staff member procuring the transport.
Well the good news is that reputable operators are fighting back! They will not cut corners. Therefore with the right advice, decision makers can avoid those pitfalls and reduce the burden of responsibility and the potential for injury by asking the right questions.
Many coach brokers will dazzle you by superimposing their logo onto copyrighted images found online, take your money, then subcontract your transfer to the least expensive operator regardless of coach specification, age or safety aspects. These rogue operators can deliver significantly reduced rates for one reason: they are cutting costs somewhere within their business. But where? Service inspections? Tyre rotation? Driver hours regulations? Can you really afford to find out?
You can build up a picture of an operator by making enquiries of their business. 'Do you own your own fleet?' 'What is the average age of your vehicles?' 'Do your vehicles have seat belts?‘ You can save yourself time by asking one, 'Are you members of BUSK?‘
The organisation BUSK (Belt Up School Kids) is a recognised, non-profit organisation dedicated to the safety of school children, and their 'Simply Safe' Benchmark only accepts the most reputable operators onto the scheme. Strict criteria must be satisfied in order to become accepted as a member. The accreditation allows up to 6 stars depending on the company's proven safety aspects and track record. This offers staff, pupils and parents the peace of mind that your chosen operator's safety standards have already been vetted to the highest degree.
The coach industry is slowly winning the war against these cowboy operators and Houdini-esque coach brokers who have no trouble sleeping at night. My hope is that by assisting schools to make informed decisions, operators and schools can be instrumental in the reduction of student injury or even fatality. So choose wisely, and help to keep our children safe.
For more information please see our webinar entitled 'Quality Coaches or Casual Cowboys'
Operations Director, Horseman Coaches Ltd
For more information on what Horseman Coaches has to offer, please visit http://www.horsemancoaches.co.uk/