My last column [BUSRide, January-February 2010, Risk Management] focused on the decision many operators could soon face with regard to retrofitting seatbelts to the existing fleet. Such a decision will ultimately come down to several factors that include cost, restraint capabilities, customer demand and risk.
Last year it became clear that the government would issue a seatbelt mandate for new motorcoaches. This would not come as a complete surprise to the industry given recent high profile fatal accidents involving ejections, and especially the motorcoach-specific crash testing NHTSA has conducted on the effectiveness of passenger restraints.
Keeping you up to date with developments in Europe has never caused me hardship, but some assignments really are fantastic. This letter is from Stresa on the banks of Lake Maggiore in northern Italy, where I visited the Fiat/Iveco test track at Balocco and Irisbus, a division of Iveco and the second largest bus and coach manufacturer in Europe.