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California Public Utilities Commission
505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco
PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Terrie Prosper, 415.703.1366, firstname.lastname@example.org
CPUC JOINS WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT ON STRIKE TEAM
TO ENFORCE SAFETY COMPLIANCE OF PASSENGER CARRIERS
AT MAJOR AIRPORTS AND OTHER AREAS OF INTERESTS
SAN FRANCISCO, November 9, 2009 - The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) participated in four multi-agency strike force operations on passenger carriers (limousine, shuttles, tour bus) during the third quarter of 2009. These operations were conducted to ensure that companies are properly licensed with CPUC. The operations were conducted at the following locations:
1. San Diego International Airport Vehicle Inspection - July 7, 2009 - CPUC staff along with San Diego Landside Operations and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) Motor Carrier Specialist Unit participated in a surprise joint agencies shuttle and limousine inspection at the Airport. CPUC staff inspected 53 shuttles and limousines and wrote 22 inspection observation notices. Nine shuttles had one or more of the following violations: engaged employee-driver without evidence of workers' compensation insurance on file, operating without evidence of public liability insurance on file, failing to maintain current equipment list, and failing to display PSC/TCP numbers.
2. Del Mar Race Track Vehicle Inspection - July 22, 2009 - CPUC staff conducted a surprise limousine and bus inspection at the Del Mar Race Track on opening day. CPUC staff checked 108 limousines and 33 buses, and wrote seven Notices to Correct violations to carriers for operating without a permit, non compliance with properly identifying the vehicle, and operating outside the scope of the operating authority.
3. Limousine Sting Operation at SFO Airport, San Francisco - August 3 and 7, 2009 - CPUC staff participated in two undercover limousine operations with SFO Airport Police, Ground Transportation Enforcement Unit (GTEU) in an effort to catch unlicensed carriers and deter illegal solicitation activity at SFO. CPUC staff acted as decoys under the watchful eyes of SFO police officers on foot-patrol. The operations resulted in eight limousine operators cited for various violations (solicitation, no waybill, no airport permit, no photo ID displayed, and no CPUC authority), three limousine operators cited for operations with a suspended and/or revoked permit, one limousine operator cited for mechanical violations, and one limousine driver cited for speeding. GTEU officers were also monitoring illegal limousine activity and operators inside and outside of the terminal buildings.
Update on the sting operation on April 9, 2009: Juan Leiva, who had solicited a CPUC decoy, was found guilty and fined $2,456 for violation of various airport rules including solicitation.
4. San Jose Mineta International Airport (SJC) - September 23, 2009 - CPUC staff along with the CHP, Santa Clara Weights and Measures Division (SCWM), Employment Development Department (EDD), San Jose Police Department, and San Jose Airport Landside Operations, conducted a surprise passenger carrier inspection. This is first time that SJC Landside expanded the operation to include taxicabs. Approximately 116 vehicles (37 were shuttles, limos, and vans subject to CPUC jurisdiction; 10 hotel shuttles; and 69 taxi cabs) were pulled over for the inspection. The CPUC issued one misdemeanor warning (operation with a pending permit), and 22 Notices to Correct Violations (failed to maintain current vehicles with the CPUC, waybills, and possible workers' compensation insurance violations). Fourteen had no violations noted.
For more information on the CPUC, please visit www.cpuc.ca.gov.