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MTO will stop treating 'restricted use' defects as 'out-of-service' defects

from OMCA

Years ago, MTO developed a list of passenger-safety related bus equipment defects that, if discovered by an MTO officer during a facility visit or on-road inspection, results in the bus being placed into "restricted use." Once in "restricted use" the bus can still be operated but passengers cannot be carried, or in some cases, passengers can be carried if the defective component (loose seat, defective loading ramp, etc.) isn't required on that trip. A few of the "restricted use" items are:
• Inoperative heaters
• Missing first aid kit
• Defective wheelchair loading ramp
• Missing fire extinguisher
• Loose passenger seat (no passenger allowed in that seat or the one behind it)
• Mirror improperly adjusted

The problem is that when an MTO officer fills out their Inspection Report, the "restricted use" code is entered in the "out of service" box, which means that it shows up as "out of service" on the operator's CVOR. Ontario's bus industry objected to this practice as it deviates from the North American Standard Out of Service Criteria that Ontario subscribes to. Also, a "restricted use" defect is not an indication that the bus is not roadworthy. It unfairly inflates an operator's OOS rate and results in unfair comparisons. Insurance companies, tour operators, charter groups, etc. interpret an "out of service" event on CVOR abstracts as a serious mechanical defect, so serious the bus is unsafe to operate, which is not the case with most "restricted use" defects.

Last week, MTO announced they will stop the practice of recording "restricted use" defects as "out of service" defects. As of April 1, 2014 a “restricted use” defect will be noted on the inspection report as a violation, but it will not show up on the operator's CVOR as an "out of service" event. more

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