DORVAL — An STM bus driver could face disciplinary action after allegedly talking on his cell phone while driving.
Passenger Andre Noel contends the driver spoke for a considerable amount of time on the phone while driving the 202 bus between the Dorval terminal and the Fairview shopping centre in Pointe-Claire on March 20th.
Noel used his smart phone to record the driver.
“What kind of messages are we sending when professional drivers, those who are responsible for the safety of passengers and everybody, are flagrantly just disregarding the law. That’s the part that actually got to me,” Noel told Global News.
Under the Quebec Highway Safety Code it is illegal to use a cell phone behind the wheel of a vehicle in motion.
A bluetooth device has to be used instead.
Noel contends this clearly wasn’t the case and the STM rider has filed a complaint with the public transit administration.
“I taught my 16 year old driver how to drive years ago and it’s a big faux-pas. You don’t have a hand held device in your hands anymore. And here you got an STM driver who’s actually modifying the safety devices on his bus so he can yak undetected by his passengers,” Noel said.
Noel argues the driver even tilted the rear view mirror downward to avoid being detected by other passengers.
A spokesperson for the STM confirms a complaint has been filed and the driver will be questioned.
“The driver will be met. Evidence weighed and the STM will make a decision,” STM Vice-Chair Marvin Rotrand told Global News.
Rotrand says bus drivers have to obey the rules of the road like everyone else.
He admits this isn’t the first time a driver has been caught using a cell phone while the bus is in motion and says drivers have the added responsibility of ensuring passenger safety.
“When you’re a bus driver you have the responsibility of ensuring your passengers are safe. So clearly we make that understood by all the drivers,” Rotrand said.
The driver could face a disciplinary action that ranges between a warning to a firing depending on the driver’s record according to Amélie Regis of the STM.
Noel doesn’t want the driver to lose his job, he just hopes a lesson will be learned so this alleged incident doesn’t happen again.