Updated 03/24/2011 09:37 PM
Two School Bus Drivers Arrested In Wake Of Crackdown
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Two Queens bus drivers have been arrested as a result of last week’s statewide crackdown on tour bus safety.
More than three-dozen buses and drivers -- including 16 in the city -- were pulled off the road in that crackdown.
Two of those drivers are now under arrest.
They're accused of having a valid license in one name and a suspended license under another name.
The facial recognition technology used to capture them also led to the arrest of a taxi driver for the same offense.
The bus drivers have been identified as George Gregory Gonsalves who worked for Community Transportation Systems and Emel Enrique Marin, also known as Carlos Lopez.
He worked for a school bus operator.
An attorney for the company says Marin has been with the company for 11 years and had a spotless record.
He says his application was sent to the Department of Education for a background check.
A consultant for the Logan Bus Company says that as far as they know all of their other drivers have valid licenses.
"Our only concern right now is making sure that the children are picked up from school and we're just concerned that on the property. We don't want anyone to get injured or anything else like that," said Consultant Arthur Avedon.
The crackdown came in the wake of a tour bus crash earlier this month in the Bronx in which 15 people were killed.
The driver of that bus, Ophadell Williams, has not been charged.
Meantime, a second passenger has filed a lawsuit claiming Williams repeatedly fell asleep at the wheel prior to the crash.
"During the trip he had been awoken because the bus went over the rumble strip waking him up. The bus then went over the rumble strip a second time and at that point Mr. Jean Marie yelled 'wake up driver.' At that point, he must have woken up because he righted the bus, and it was the third time that the bus went over the side of the road," said Jean's attorney, Herb Subin.
Jean Marie suffered injuries to his shoulder and spine.
He is demanding $200 million in damages.
The other passenger who sued, 74-year-old Yuke Chue Lo, is asking for $20 million.
Williams' attorney is disputing the passengers' claims.
He says his client was awake and sober at the time of the crash.
Police found no trace of alcohol on Williams' breath.