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School buses safety claims; TRANSPORT: Yellow buses 'do not meet EU standards'.

THE AMERICAN-style school buses which will carry children in Wrexham are not as safe as many coaches which already operate on school routes, transport campaigners have warned.

Transport company First Bus is to introduce 10 of the distinctive yellow school buses on school routes in Wrexham from June 10.

But school transport campaign group Belt Up School Kids (Busk) has warned the buses do not meet European safety standards that apply to some vehicles currently in use on school routes.

Busk founder Pat Harris, who inspected one of the American buses at First Bus's invitation 18 months ago, said the buses did not meet European regulations which ensured coaches would not crush if overturned.

She said, "First Bus claims it has a roll-over cage, it may well have one but it does not meet ECE-R66 regulations which coaches that carry children in this country had to comply with from April 1, 1993."

But First Bus spokesman Stuart Render said, "The buses we will be operating in Wrexham very shortly are operating in Yorkshire and Surrey and have been approved and certified by the Department of Transport."
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Apr 23, 2002
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