Ski coach over hours
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A SHROPSHIRE coach driver drove a party of school girls for 28 hours through France and England — with his only break on the Channel ferry, Oswestry magistrates court heard on November 12.
Thomas Jones, of Acrefair, near Wrexham, admitted using the coach when recording equipment was not in use, exceeding the daily driving period of nine hours, and failing to take a rest period for 10 hours before driving. He was fined £20 on the first charge and £50 on the other two charges.
Jones used to drive for Vaggs Coaches, of Knockin Heath. The company was part of the T. E. Jones group which has since gone into liquidation.
The company had been given a contract to take a party to Les Duex Alpes in France for a skiing holiday and said it would provide a coach which could travel quickly enough for the driver to complete the journey without having to drive for longer than permitted.
In fact, the company provided a slower vehicle. Mr P. D. McKnight, prosecuting for the West Midlands Traffic Commissioners, told the court.
Jones travelled to Dover on the coach as a crew member, but did not keep a record of that on the coach's tachograph. He took over at Dover, but during the outward journey it became apparent that the coach was travelling too slowly for Jones to complete the journey without infringing regulations.
Vaggs Coaches, which was not represented in court, was found guilty of permitting Jones' three offences. It was fined a total of £220 with £59 costs.