Coach Hire for Schools
For many teachers, organising a school trip can often be a demanding task, but with help from Priory Coaches we have it covered.
As you will know the Department for Education and Employment has produced guidelines for teachers organising school trips. The health and safety measures place responsibility on teachers to check all aspects of your pupils journey and this includes the competence of your chosen coach hire company.
As a school you should be in a position to verify the following:-
All Priory coach drivers are highly trained professionals and have experience in all types of coach travel. As an essential part of the team your driver will ensure that you get to where you want to go and on time. Communicating with your driver in key discussions is often welcomed by the driver who can share his/her experience and knowledge where appropriate. All our drivers go through a tough selection procedure to ensure that we only employ those with professionalism and experience thus ensuring that all our customers receive the care and attention to detail that they deserve. Drivers employed by Priory Coaches undergo enhanced CRB checks and management and staff are fully committed to a programme of training and quality accreditation.
As required by the EU Directive 2003/59 all drivers currently employed have undergone their Driver CPC (Driver Certificate of Professional Competence) which is a new qualification that all bus, coach and lorry drivers have to have and has been introduced across the European Union to maintain high driving standards. With continued training this will ensure that all drivers are aware of the legal requirements required by the industry. This covers the likes of good and safe working practice, knowledge of road law, including the safety related drivers hours regulations and rules for tachographs, safe and fuel efficient driving (which may include vehicle loading, fuel consumption and pollution) and health and safety (which include first aid, passenger safety and customer service). Drivers licences are checked twice yearly to ensure that they have the full licence entitlement for the type of vehicle they are likely to drive.
All Priory Coaches are maintained in house and the company has three qualified engineers. The company's preventative maintenance programme is based on a 28 day inspection cycle. Inspections are carried out based on the VOSA inspection manual handbook and method of inspection and are carried out as per instruction. A tapley metre is available for 28 day brake tests, giving percentage of braking fore of primary braking and parking brake. A written driver daily defect reporting system is in place and each driver is required to undertake a visual inspection of the vehicle prior to taking the vehicle out on the public highway. The inspection is recorded and any defects are brought to the attention of the company's fleet engineer for rectification before entering service. Tachograph charts are used on all vehicles and are checked on a weekly basis.
Coaches and Safety Equipment
All coaches are equipped with the required safety equipment. This includes a fire extinguisher, window hammers, adequate safety exits, and a first aid kit. Seatbelts are provided for all seats in the form of two point lap belts and must be worn at all times whilst travelling on the vehicle. There are key areas in which teachers and escorts can help maintain discipline, making the coach trip safer and more enjoyable for everyone. As all coach seats are numbered it makes sense to allocate each person to a seat which in turn becomes their responsibility throughout the trip. It also helps to reduce the rare incidence of vandalism and is a good way of separating any troublesome pupils. It is impossible to maintain discipline from the front seats of a coach alone and you should ensure that you operate a rota system between staff so that there are always teachers or escorts positioned near all the emergency exits generally at the rear and middle of the coach.
Some coaches may have toilets on board but they are designed for occasional use only and can easily be blocked by misuse. We will be happy to issue the toilet key to your nominated person for issue to any pupil requiring the toilet, which helps cut down on unnecessary visits.
It is our policy that your group travels in as much comfort as possible and the key to this is to ensure that the group has adequate comfort stops en route. Please ask for advice on scheduling your journey prior to booking the trip. There is nothing worse for pupils when boredom sets in after a long journey on a coach and is the surest way to provoke bad behaviour.
Our office is open between the hours of 0900 - 1700 Monday to Friday and 0900 - 1300 on a Saturday. Outside these hours an on call Operations Manager is always available. In the unlikely event of a breakdown or accident all drivers carry a suitable mobile phone so that they can contact the on call Operations Manager or Fleet Engineer and other relevant authorities if required to do so. Every situation is different but in the event that the problem cannot be rectified quickly Priory Coaches will always be able to arrange onward travel for your group by contacting other coach operators throughout the UK who will provide assistance whenever and where ever possible. This could include providing the provision of a replacement vehicle to aid the onward journey of the passengers. In addition, and if required to do so we will endeavour to keep any third party informed of any significant delay in the group's arrival at its destination.
Insurance and Best Practice
Priory coaches maintains it professional repute with continuous reassessment of its operations and quality management systems at all times.
Our fleet insurer is:
ERS Syndicates Management Limited
52-54 Leadenhall Street
Our Employees/Public Liability policy is with:
Allianz Insurance PLC
Our Operators Licence Number is:
North Eastern Traffic Area, Hillcrest House
386 Harehills Lane, Leeds