Guidelines for the management of bus services

Clause 25 of the Passenger Transport Regulation 2007 states that an accredited operator must not suffer or permit any person other than:

  1. A designated director or manager (if the accredited operator is a corporation), or
  2. Another accredited operator (if the accredited operator is not a corporation), to operate, manage, supervise or administer the relevant service (except for, in the case of a corporation, a person appointed under any law to manage the affairs of the corporation).

While the legislation allows for a corporation (which is accredited to operate buses) to appoint an alternative designated director or manager (who has been vetted and successfully undertaken an approved training course), individual operators (or partnerships) can only appoint another accredited operator to operate the service in the event that they are not able to directly influence the way that service is carried on.

To assist accredited bus operators in exercising their responsibilities with regard to the management of public passenger services, Roads and Maritime Services has developed the following guidelines.

  1. An accredited operator must appoint another accredited operator (or designated director or manager, if the accredited operator is a corporation) to manage the bus service whenever they are not able to directly influence the way that service is carried on.

    Directly influencing the way a service is carried on means the ready ability to make all decisions that affect the business. Accordingly, while technology such as email, mobile phones or personal digital assistants may enable operators to make remote management decisions, it is important that such decisions are timely, informed and do not compromise safety.
  2. As a guide, it is likely that an operator of a non-commercial (Contract A) school bus service would not normally need to appoint another accredited operator when taking leave during school vacations (as no service is being provided).

    Conversely, the operator of a commercial contract bus service (Contract B) would need to appoint an alternative operator (or designated director or manager) to manage the service during periods of leave (or absence) if they are not able to directly run or control the way that service is carried on. This requirement also applies to operators of Contract A services whenever the service is being provided.
  3. In order to enable compliance with this guideline, operators are strongly encouraged to ensure that they have arrangements in place to appoint another accredited operator in the event that they are absent from the business and not able to directly manage the way that service operates. In the case of:
    1. Corporations - This may involve requiring staff members to successfully undertake an approved training course conducted by the Institute of Transport and Logistic Studies and then seeking Roads and Maritime’s approval to designate such persons as directors or managers for this purpose. Further information on approved training courses can be found at The University of Sydney.
    2. Partnerships - This may involve requiring an additional partner to successfully undertake an approved training course conducted by the Institute of Transport and Logistic Studies and then seeking Roads and Maritime’s approval to appoint such persons as an accredited operator for this purpose. If not already done so, this will also require T Roads and Maritime’ to vet such nominees. Further information on approved training courses can be found at The University of Sydney Bus and Coach Accreditation and Professional Development.
    3. Accredited operators who are individual or sole traders - have arrangements in place to appoint another accredited operator in the event that the operator is absent from the business and not able to directly manage the way that service operates.

Any questions concerning this matter should be directed to Roads and Maritime (02) 9689 8888.

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