Guidelines for Driving 15-Passenger Vans

by Jordan Clary on January 20, 2009

Life isn’t always predictable. Sometimes we have to do what circumstances dictate. If you find yourself in the position of driving a 15-passenger van, or if your organization can’t afford to upgrade the van to a bus, the following guidelines will help you have a safer journey for yourself and for your passengers:

  • Ideally the driver should be experienced and trained in emergency maneuvers, especially in relationship to these vehicles. Some organizations suggest a minimum of five years driving with a clean record. Some organizations such as hotels and day care centers may offer special training in the handling of these vans. If they don’t, ask!
  • Prepare ahead of time and make sure you are current on the latest developments with 15-passenger vans. Preparation is probably the single-most important thing you can do to avoid an accident. If there are any physical or mental conditions that may affect driving, make sure you offer full disclosure.
  • Get regular safety checks. Tires should be checked once a month. Make sure they are properly inflated and that there are no serious signs of wear and tear.
  • Always use seat belts and make sure that your passengers buckle up as well. You should also check your seat belts regularly to make sure they are working properly.
  • If possible, avoid driving late at night or during inclement weather when visibility is low.
  • Extra precautions should be taken when driving on wet or icy roads or on rural back roads with lots of curves.
  • Don’t allow drivers to drive long-distances. Have an alternate driver to take shifts.
  • Vehicles should be inspected twice a year or every 5000 miles–whichever comes first.
  • Limit passengers to ten or less, plus the driver–even though more will fit. Overloaded vans or vans filled to capacity are more likely to roll over during emergency maneuvers.
  • Make sure there is a working cell phone in the van, but the driver should never use it while driving.
  • Regular check ups are essential. Always make sure the windshield wipers, brakes and lights are in good working order.
  • Obey all traffic rules–don’t speed!
  • Never drink or use drugs and drive!
If you’ve been involved in an accident and need assistance finding an attorney, please contact us using the form at the right.

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