Why Choosing The Right Transportation Provider Can Be A Matter of Life or Death

By Patrick Labriola

As the seasons begin to change and the weather cools down, your hotel guests will begin taking more day trips and indulging in longer excursions.  Guests may then turn to you for assistance in arranging their transportation.  While your guests will be focused on enjoying their leisure time, your main priority will be their safety wherever that holiday takes them.

The spotlight continues to focus on motorcoach safety, following the latest high-profile accidents including the Mohegan Sun Casino disaster where 15 passengers were killed when a bus returning from an overnight trip to the casino crashed, and the tragedy involving the Bluffton University (Ohio) baseball team, near Atlanta, Georgia.  The Bluffton University case resulted in a lawsuit against the motor carrier and the university, costing more than $25 million.  While the Mohegan Sun Casino lawsuit is not yet settled, it is estimated the accident will cost the casino more than $100 million.

Hotels, like the casino and the university, are not immune to liability when it comes to safety.   Hotel operators risk substantial liability and lasting reputation damage if an injury-causing or fatal accident occurs on a motor carrier transporting their guests.  It is critical that hotel operators look beyond motor carrier cost and identify and choose a motor carrier that has a proven safety record.

With more than 700,000 registered motor carriers on the road today, comparing motor carrier safety is a daunting task.  A third party safety rating service provides a way for trip organizers to identify safe motor carriers through objective information on motor carrier safety practices and history.  Without this type of system, not only is distinguishing one motor carrier’s safety record over another’s nearly impossible, but the danger of rogue motor carriers finding their way into the selection pool increases significantly.  With a third party validation of safety, the uncertainty can end.

Hotel operators should encourage passenger trip organizers to request information on safety policies, procedures and records directly from motor carriers. They should also encourage organizers to select only motor carriers that have the necessary safety standards in place and that record their performance on a regular basis.  Performing due diligence can help maximize the safety of the transportation provided to your guests, and lessen your hotel’s risk of liability and reputation damage.

About the Author

Patrick Labriola is President of Transportation Safety Exchange (TSX), an independent safety rating organization that performs detailed investigations of motor carriers to ensure they are meeting the highest possible safety standard available.  Patrick can be reached at plabriolatsx@tsxcr.com.  Visit the TSX web site at www.TransportationSafetyExchange.com or www.GetThereSafely.com.