|Posted by [email protected] on April 5, 2015 at 7:25 AM|
Minibus and Community Bus Permits (Section 19 permits) are issued to organisations concerned with education, social welfare or other activities of benefit to the community. They allow certain organisations, including schools, to make a charge without having to comply with the full public service vehicle operator requirements and without the need for the driver to have a PCV (Category D1 or D) entitlement.
Certain organisations can apply for a Minibus Permit, (Section 19 -Transport Act 1985) for vehicles that can carry between nine and sixteen passengers. The Permit allows organistations like volunteer groups concerned with education, religion, social welfare, recreations and other activities that are beneficial to the community to make a charge without having to comply with the full passenger carrying vehicle entitlement (PCV) operator licensing requirements and without the need for their drivers to have PCV entitlement.
Many community transport organisations and charities now operate minibuses under a section 19 permit which, allows for the service provided to be for the organisations’ own members or for groups of people whom the organisation serves. Such organisations can charge or accept a form of remuneration for providing transport at a level to recover some or all of the costs of running the vehicle, and may even include an allowance for vehicle depreciation but the service must not be provided to members of the general public and the charges made must be on a non-profit basis. This non-profit requirement extends to cover any direct costs connected with a particular trip such as expenses incurred by volunteers, but not the wages of any staff involved.
A driver of a Section 19 permit minibus can either be paid or an unpaid volunteer. It should be noted however, that volunteer minibus drivers who passed their car driving test after 1st January 1997 are restricted to drive minibuses which weigh no more that 3500kgs gross vehicle weight.NB. Schools must hold a ‘Section 19 permit’ if minibus journeys are funded to any extent by outside sources such as parents or parent teacher associations. Schools and educational establishments who do not charge their pupils do not normally need a section 19 permit. See driving a school minibus.
Section 19 permits can be obtained from your local Traffic Area Network Office or contact the Driver and Vehicle and Operator Standards Agency .