Seven commercial ground transportation vehicles were removed from service and 72 citations were issued to drivers for mechanical, misdemeanor and administrative violations during a multi-agency law enforcement operation conducted at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) Thursday, July 19th.
The goal of the operation was to enhance the personal safety of the general public that uses commercial ground transportation services, airport police said.
Travelers at airports such as LAX are significant customers for commercial ground transportation providers, airport police said.
Nearly 54 representatives from the Los Angeles Airport Police, California Highway Patrol (CHP), California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) and Los Angeles World Airports Landside Operations conducted the inspections at the airport’s limousine holding lot.
A total of 289 limousines, buses, door-to-door shuttle vans and long-distance vans were inspected during the three-and-a-half-hour operation.
The multi-agency team focused on proper driver and vehicle licensing, Public Utilities Commission and airport operating permits and other law enforcement-related issues.
CHP officers and inspectors concentrated on mechanical equipment, including braking systems, passenger restraints, headlights, suspension and other safety systems that are required to be in good working order.
Of the 289 vehicles inspected, seven were issued misdemeanor violations for operating with a suspended or revoked PUC permit and were removed from service, police said.
The vehicles and the drivers are prohibited from further operation at LAX until violations of the airport’s ground transportation operating permit program are corrected, police said.
The law enforcement agencies removed three additional vehicles from service for serious mechanical problems with brakes, vehicle suspension and other mechanical issues. Faulty transponders — devices that are attached to commercial vehicles to monitor the number of times they enter the airport’s Central Terminal Area roadways — were confiscated from several vehicles.
Seven drivers were issued personal service citations for misdemeanor violations, including driving out-of-class and not having valid PUC permits. Fines for these citations vary and the drivers must show proof of correction before they can resume for-hire operation.