Transcript for bus registration video

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Hello, and welcome to Transport Safety Victoria (TSV).

As the safety regulator for bus transport in Victoria, TSV is responsible for:

  1. Registering and accrediting bus operators
  2. Monitoring their safety performance and safety compliance
  3. Taking enforcement action where necessary, as well as investigating and reporting on bus safety matters
  4. Providing advice and recommendations to the government on transport safety issues
  5. Collecting, analysing and reporting on safety data, and
  6. Providing guidance and training to promote awareness of bus safety issues.

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Aimed at promoting continuous improvement and public confidence in bus safety, Victoria enacted new safety legislation, the Bus Safety Act, in 2009.

The Act and its accompanying regulations deal with:

  1. The effective management of safety risks in bus operations
  2. Continuous improvement in bus safety management
  3. The involvement of relevant stakeholders in bus safety, and
  4. Promoting a safety culture among all those involved in providing a bus service.

The purpose of this video is to provide you, as a future registered bus operator, with the information you need when applying for bus operator registration and, once registered, how you can continue to comply with your legal obligations as a registered bus operator.

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A vehicle that carries nine or less people on a commercial basis is not classified as a bus under the Bus Safety Act even though it could possibly look like a bus.

In these circumstances, the operator requires a license from the Taxi Services Commission and not accreditation or registration.

If your vehicle carries 10 or more people including the driver, it is a bus as far as the Act is concerned.

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Bus services where operators are required to be accredited by Transport Safety Victoria are those that are provided for profit using a bus built with seating for 13 or more adult passengers including the driver.

These include commercial bus services such as:

  • route bus services
  • demand responsive bus services
  • tour and charter bus services
  • courtesy bus services

as well as local bus services which:

  • seat 13 or more adults
  • are operated on a regular basis or subject to demand, and
  • are available to the general public at no extra cost.

The second category of bus services that are required to be registered by TSV are community and private bus services using a bus with 10 or more seats.

These bus services are provided on a not-for-profit basis and are:

Community and private bus services provided by:

  • religious
  • educational
  • health
  • welfare
  • philanthropic
  • sporting
  • or social bodies.

There are a variety of entities that may provide a community and private bus service. For example, an aged care facility that owns a bus and uses that bus to transport residents to social activities or medical appointments would be providing a community and private bus service.

A hire and drive bus service is where a business hires a bus to a person or some other entity.

The hire service does not cover the carriage of the passengers on the bus. The hirer a must obtain either accreditation or registration for the type of bus operation they wish to conduct.

Those services provided on a not-for-profit basis and are either community and private bus services provided by:

  • religious
  • educational
  • health
  • welfare
  • philanthropic
  • sporting
  • or social bodies.

Commercial minibus services or bus services that only use 10, 11 or 12-seat buses to provide a route, demand-responsive or a tour and charter bus service.

The operators of these services are only required to be registered by TSV.

A privately owned bus used for personal purposes only is not covered by the Bus Safety Act and does not need registration or accreditation.

If in doubt, please contact TSV on 1800 223 022 and follow the prompts to speak to a member of the Bus Safety branch.

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Before applying for registration, you should determine whether in fact you do need to be registered, and think about whether you wish to apply as:

  • an individual person
  • a body corporate
  • an association
  • a cooperative or other body corporate
  • a partnership, or
  • an unincorporated body or association.

When applying you will need to provide Transport Safety Victoria with:

  1. A completed application (the form is available from TSV's website under the bus safety accreditation and registration section)
  2. Proof of identification
  3. Certificates of business registration, and
  4. A copy of current roadworthy certificates (from a licensed bus tester) for each bus to be used in your bus service.

There are no application or annual fees associated with registration.

It is strongly recommended that, prior to sending in your application for registration to TSV, you contact TSV's accreditation and registration staff on 1800 223 022 to discuss the nature of your bus operation and confirm that it falls within the definition of a community and private bus service.

Once the application is received by TSV, checks are made to confirm that the proposed bus services are either a hire and drive bus service, a community and private bus service, or a commercial minibus service.

The last category a bus operator registration concerns commercial minibus services. That is:

  • route bus services
  • demand responsive, or
  • tour and charter bus services

that only use a bus or buses with 10, 11 or 12 adult seating positions including the driver.

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As a registered bus operator, you will be required to:

  1. Ensure that your bus undergoes an annual safety inspection by a licensed bus tester
  2. Maintain and implement a written alcohol and drug management policy that is developed in consultation with bus safety workers
  3. Determine the maximum number of passengers that may be safely carried on each bus, and
  4. Ensure that your bus complies with the applicable bus standards.

Please note that all school buses must be fitted with complying warning lights and signs and all buses must have serviceable fire extinguishers.

If, in the unlikely event your bus is involved in an accident or incident, you must verbally notify TSV immediately.

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If you are unsure about your bus operator application, please contact TSV on 1800 223 022 or email us oninformation@transportsafety.vic.gov.au

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