For every new employee, the first ninety (90) days are a trial period. During this time, you will learn about the company, your job and your new surroundings. At the same time your supervisor will be providing you with training and constructive criticism so that you will be able to learn about your job. During this period, your attendance record, your ability to learn, your attitude towards your job and your overall performance are the factors that determine whether we will recommend you for continued employment.
SCHOOL APPROVAL OF DRIVERS:
The school districts we serve have the contractual right to require the company to remove any driver from its service. In the event that the district requests the removal of a particular employee, the company is obligated to comply.
As required by law, all school bus drivers must receive a physical examination. Pierce Coach Line will pay for this pre-employment physical.
Personal hygiene is of the utmost importance since you are dealing with the public. Your appearance is extremely important, as it sets the image of the Company in the eyes of the public. Your clothing should be clean and neat at all times.
If you are ill and cannot report to work, or find it necessary to go home due to illness, please let the dispatcher know as soon as possible. Calling in after your report time is not acceptable.
It is the drivers responsibility to report to the dispatcher, and DOT pre-trip and post-trip inspection cards.
Pierce Coach Line/ Willow Bus Service is on a weekly payroll. You will be paid every Thursday. Our pay week starts on Tuesday morning and ends Monday night. All drivers working both AM and PM, and are on time, are guaranteed 5 hours per day. All drivers working only AM or only PM, and are on time, will be guaranteed 2 1/2 hours per day. If you are late for your shift your hours will be deducted accordingly. All charters are paid by the hour. Starting salary for a bus driver is $15.00 per hour and $14.00 per hour for a van driver.
ALCOHOLIC AND CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES:
Under no circumstance are alcoholic beverages or controlled substances to be consumed on the premises, nor shall any employee report for work "under the influence". Any infraction of this rule will result in immediate dismissal. While employed, you are subject to random drug and alcohol testing. Willow Bus Service/Pierce Coach Line will pay for the testing. In the event of a failure, you will be immediately terminated.
CHECK-IN AND ROUTE ASSIGNMENT
Report directly to the dispatch office window. Do not engage in other activity or conversation until you have spoken to the dispatcher. The dispatcher will tell you
what time to report as with each different run, there is a different report time. Back up drivers must report at 6:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Pick up your route board; note any change. NEVER VARY FROM PRINTED ROUTE.
Get your vehicle assignment and go directly to your bus. Go through the mandatory pre-trip inspection and warm-up routine. You must make sure your radio is on and volume is up at all times. Do a radio-check with dispatcher before leaving.
If you experience difficulty on the road, radio the dispatcher immediately or pull over and telephone (621-2210 or 621-2218) at next earliest point in time when your bus is empty. Any malfunctions should be written up on your daily report sheet.
Pierce Coach Line is of the firm belief that time invested in the hiring and training of new drivers is well spent. For this reason, great care is taken in these endeavors.
The following is the procedure followed in the acquisition of new employees. Each requirement must be met to advance to the next.
- When a person applies for a job, he/she is interviewed to determine his/her background, skills, and attitude as it pertains to the job. It is important that the applicant can interact well with people and has a pleasant yet disciplined demeanor. If the interviewer feels that the applicant meets the preliminary requirements, he advances to the next step.
- If the applicant already has a CDL license, he is road tested by our safety director. Obviously, his skill will determine if he advances to the next step. (If the applicant has a permit, he would be taken on a "basic road skill" test to determine his talent for driving a school bus, after which a training schedule would be implemented for him if he shows promise.)
- Pre-employment physical examination and drug and alcohol testing administered.
- Acquisition of "driving abstract" from Department of Motor Vehicle, showing us the applicants driving history.
- Fingerprints taken.
- Written test given.
- Physical performance test administered.
- Letter of reference checked out.
- Drivers Manual gone over with applicant.
- Two-hour safety course to be completed.
- Once all of the above requirements are met, the applicant is assigned to a veteran driver, who will work with him for a minimum of ten hours. During that time he will be introduced to the area he will drive in and the "daily habits and practices" he must adhere to.
- Intermediate evaluation: is the new driver adjusting well, showing good driving skills and developing excellent safety and decision making skills? Has he learned his route and is he exhibiting good "people and professional" skills?
Once the new driver has successfully passed all of the above requirements, hes
welcomed into the Willow/Pierce family as a permanent driver. At that time we will schedule him for the next 30 hour school bus safety course, which must be completed during his first year of driving.
Of course, even our permanent drivers are monitored for compliance and safety throughout their employment with us. All drivers meet 19A requirements and affidavits of compliance for the last three years are attached.
We take seriously the responsibility of SAFELY transporting a most precious cargo children. Every effort is made to do our absolute best in this regard.
- Two-hour mandated safety refresher class to be given twice yearly: the first 7 to 14 days before the start of school in the fall, the second to be given the following January. All classes are given by our certified School Bus Driver Instructor in our BOCES certified classrooms.
- Thirty hour mandated schoolbus safety course -- required of all drivers in the first year of driving. This course is also given by our certified School Bus Driver Instructor in our BOCES certified classrooms.
- As constant reminders to all drivers, we contracted with an agency for the design of signs displaying the safety rules and practices which we feel are important. These signs are posted throughout our facility.
- Pre- and post-trip vehicle inspections, mandated by the Department of Transportation are a necessity in maintaining vehicle safety at all times.
- A bulletin board is hung under the dispatch window for the purpose of posting current or newsworthy articles pertaining to school bus safety and transportation.
- As a weekly reminder, we hand out a safety "tip of the week" with each paycheck. In these notices, we reiterate safety practices and procedures.
All drivers are required to attend 2 two-hour refreshers: one before the start of school, held in August; and the other in January of every year. All Pierce Coach Line refreshers and safety classes are conducted at one of the three BOCES certified classrooms on the grounds of Pierce Coach Line.These courses are conducted by our certified school bus driver instructor trainer and 19A qualified staff member.
Also required is a 30 hour safety course. All drivers must complete this course within their first year of driving. This class is also conducted by a certified school bus driver instructor and covers all aspects of your job as a school bus driver. A certificate will be awarded upon completion.
SAFETY FIRST! THIS MUST BE YOUR GOLDEN RULE!
DRIVE DEFENSIVELY AND ALWAYS ANTICIPATE THE UNEXPECTED! THE DRIVER IS SOLELY RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CHILDREN ON BOARD THE BUS.
- Obey traffic laws
- Observe lights and speed zones
- Obey parking regulations
- Wear your seatbelt (it's the law)
- Maintain proper behavior with the children
- Monitor your gauges (in case of a problem)
- Follow your route board exactly
- Be professional and courteous
- Report any damage to the vehicle
- Drive appropriate to weather conditions
10 RULES OF SAFETY
- Leave children on board unattended
- Shut engine off in between short breaks in run (if any)
- Turn right on red (state law)
- Always remove the keys from the bus (unless checking before backing up)
- Ignore engine/break warning lights or indicators
- Speed through deep puddles or standing water
- Speed over bumps or potholes
- Pick up hitchhikers
- Do personal errands
To Educate and remind children about practicing bus safety, Pierce Coach Line/ Willow Bus Service stresses the 10 Rules of School Bus Safety. They are designed to make safety a priority for the children.
- Be at the bus stop early.
- Wait for the bus in a safe place...away from the road.
- Take your seat right away.
- Stay seated at all times
- Keep hands, arms and head inside the bus at all times.
- Listen to the bus driver and follow directions.
- Leave the bus carefully using the handrails.
- Take 10 giant steps away from the bus.
- Look both ways before crossing and wait for the drivers signal.
- Keep away from the bus if you drop or forget something.
Pierce Coach Line, Inc. also encourages the removal of drawstrings and toggles from childrens clothing or backpacks. They can become snagged on school bus handrails or doors and can result in injury.
- Three times yearly all drivers participate in the safety drills which are mandated to be given to school children. Safe behavior on buses and rules for riding buses are addressed, as well as emergency and evacuation procedures.
- For kindergarten children who will be riding buses for the first time, either to or from school or on school trips, a special safety course is given. Parents participate during the classroom session and bus drivers welcome the children on the bus afterwards. At that time the child gets to see the bus, safety equipment, and emergency exits that were spoken about in the classroom.
- We have an extensive video library with educational children's safety films available to school districts.
FLEET INSPECTION RECORDS
- A school bus may not make a right turn at a red light.
- A school bus must have its headlights and taillights on whenever in service.
- Drivers may not drive while wearing headsets
- A school bus must come to a complete stop at all railroad crossings.
- A school bus may not be fueled while passengers are on board.
- A school bus may not be pushed or towed while passengers are on board.
- A Pre & Post trip inspection sheet must be filled out in ink every time the vehicle leaves the yard.
- A school bus must have a fully charged fire extinguisher, first aid kit and reflectors.
- Drivers may not eat or drink any beverage while driving a school bus.
- Do not leave children unattended on the bus.
- Always check for sleeping children. Walk your bus after every run!
- Drivers should not exceed posted speed limits; HOWEVER, if the speed limit is not posted the driver should not exceed 30 MPH on side roads while transporting passengers.
- There is no smoking allowed on the bus.
New York State mandates that the New York State Department of Transportation inspects every school bus. Pierce Coach Line, Inc. has a 100% pass rating from April 1, 1998 to present. All Pierce Coach Line, Inc. buses receive a six-month inspection sticker, the maximum allowed. Records are available on request.
DRIVERS' HISTORY AND RECORDS
Each driver presently meets all requirements and is certified to drive in all school districts that we service.
Each driver is in full compliance with article 19A of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law, Section 156 of the Commissioners regulations, and all state and federal requirements.
Each driver is presently participating in the Pierce Coach Line ongoing random drug testing program.
Pierce Coach Line/ Willow Bus Service, Inc. will train and hire qualified persons without discrimination on race, color, creed, age, religion, sex, national origin, handicap, marital or parental status, veteran status, political opinion or affiliation, citizenship or sexual orientation: except where age is a bona fide occupational qualification.
Pierce Coach Line takes sexual harassment very seriously. Unwelcomed sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitutes sexual harassment. The conduct may include use of language or jokes, photographs or display of offensive drawings, and flirtatious actions. Any claim of offensive conduct must be directed immediately to the safety director so corrective action may be taken.
DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE POLICY AND PROCEDURE
Pierce Coach Line Inc. is dedicated to providing safe and efficient service to our community. Moreover, we are dedicated to providing a safe workplace for our employees.
In order to meet this goal, we hereby endorse the Federal Highway Administration substance abuse regulations. We will provide training, education and other assistance to all employees driving Company vehicles. Drug testing, in accordance with DOT regulations, is an integral part of our program. Noncompliance with this policy or violation of the regulations may result in disciplinary action including suspension or dismissal.
EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
Pierce Coach Line Inc. has established an employee assistance program (EAP) which includes education and training for drivers, supervisors and company officials about controlled substances and alcohol.
The training program will cover the effects of controlled substance use on personal health, safety and the work environment. Manifestations and behavioral changes that may indicate controlled substance use and abuse will also be addressed. Documentation of these training sessions will be maintained.
DRUG AND ALCOHOL TESTING PROGRAM
- No driver shall report for duty within six hours of consuming alcohol.
- No driver shall use alcohol while on duty.
- No driver shall be on duty while having any alcohol concentration.
- No driver shall be on duty or operating commercial motor vehicle while the driver possesses alcohol, unless the alcohol is manifested and transported as part of a shipment.
- No driver shall use alcohol for eight hours following an accident, or until he/she undergoes a post-accident alcohol test, whichever occurs first.
- No driver shall use controlled substances, except when pursuant to the instructions of a physician who has advised the employee that such use will not adversely affect the employee's ability to safely operating commercial motor vehicle.
This policy applies to all those drivers requiring commercial driver's license as defined by the Department of Transportation Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations part 383.5.
Types of tests
Drug testing for marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines and PCP will be performed on urine specimens. Alcohol testing will be performed by means of breath testing devices approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Testing procedures will comply with Federal Motor Carrier regulations 49 CFR Part 40. Individual test reports will be maintained in each employee's confidential file.
Procedures for drug tests
- Six types of drug and alcohol tests are required under federal regulations: pre-employment, random, reasonable cause, return to duty, follow-up and post-accident. In addition, testing may be done as part of the periodic physical exam.
- All applicants for employment will submit to drug testing only.
- Throughout the year, drivers are subject to unannounced testing on a random basis. The total number of random drug tests will equal or exceed 50 percent of the average number of commercial motor vehicle employee positions for which testing is required. The minimum alcohol testing rate will be 10 percent. Since drivers are chosen at random throughout the year, each individual driver may not be tested or may be tested once, twice or more in a given year.
- The driver shall submit to testing, upon reasonable cause, when requested to do so by the Company. Conduct triggering testing under this part must be directly observed by a supervisor or Company official. The supervisor making this determination must have received training in the identification of behavior indicative of use of a controlled substance. Documentation of the employee's conduct shall be prepared and signed by the witness within 24 hours.
- If a driver who violates this policy is allowed to return to duty, a test will be conducted prior to the performance of a safety-sensitive function. In addition, the employee will be subject to unannounced follow-up testing. The frequency of such tests will be prescribed by a substance abuse professional and will consist of a minimum of six tests in the first 12 months following the employee's return to duty.
- The driver will test for alcohol and drugs as soon as possible after an accident, if the employee receives a citation for a moving traffic violation related to the accident or there is a fatality. The alcohol test should be performed within two hours of the accident. If not tested within two hours, the employee may be tested for alcohol up to eight hours following the accident. The drug test will be performed within thirty-two hours of the accident.
Drug testing is done by means of urine collection and analysis. The specimen will be collected by trained personnel in accordance with DOT regulations. The specimen is divided into two separate containers (the primary sample and the split sample) and sealed in a tamper-evident container and shipped to a SAMHSA-certified lab for testing. Laboratory test results are reported to the medical review officer (MRO). Before reporting a positive test to the employer, the MRO will attempt to contact the employee to discuss the test results. If the MRO is unable to contact the employee directly, the MRO will contact the employer's Drug Program Administrator who will contact the employee. If no legitimate explanation for the positive test is found, the MRO will report the test has a positive result. If there is a valid explanation for the positive test other than illegal drug use, the MRO will report the test has a negative result. A test showing the presence of medication, which the employee has used in accordance with a valid prescription, will be considered a negative test.