Details are finally beginning to emerge after an incident left a Greyhound bus full of passengers to sit idling at a Revelstoke gas station early Tuesday morning.
According to one of those passengers left on the bus, the whole ordeal came as a shock.
“We got to Revelstoke and when we got there they were waiting for another driver and at that time (our driver) said the other driver was late,” said Mel Watt, who was traveling from Calgary to Vancouver.
“The driver then left the bus; said he was done his shift or done his hours and he left the bus door open in the middle of the night. We were without a driver or any kind of security or anything for four hours.”
Once the bus finally arrived in Kelowna, the head of security for Greyhound immediately boarded the bus and began handing out refund vouchers, but that isn’t enough for Watt.
“I’m just absolutely fed up with this company. They don’t care; they have no concern for their customers,” he says.
“They’re trying to hush this up. I think this is rather serious when you have a driver and you’re stuck in the middle of winter with an open door and an idling bus with immigrants and children on board and no security, no safety and nobody knows where the driver went and simply abandoned his bus.”
After numerous calls to Greyhound went unanswered, Director of Media Relations Maureen Richmond issued an email response to say they are “conducting a full investigation into the incident and sincerely apologize for the inconvenience and uncertainty our passengers faced.”
Richmond further explains that the initial bus driver had completed his route and a relief driver was expected to continue the journey from the Revelstoke transfer point. That driver was delayed due to extreme weather and closed roads and in the course of travel had exceeded his available travel hours.
A Federal mandate says by law drivers can only operate for 13 hours and this driver was required by law to take a break. There are extensions of two hours if required due to emergencies, but it is required that drivers are off for eight hours between trips, or longer if an extension is used.