Updated 03/25/2011 10:19 PM
DMV Crackdown Leads To Arrests Of 11 Bus Drivers
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An investigation by the state Department of Motor Vehicles has led to the arrest of 11 bus drivers in or near New York City for allegedly obtaining drivers' licenses under fake names.
Governor Andrew Cuomo says seven commercial drivers and four Metropolitan Transportation Authority drivers were nabbed using facial recognition technology.
Six of the suspects live in Brooklyn, three live in Queens and two live in the Bronx.
The drivers' licenses have been suspended.
The governor ordered an audit of all commercial licenses after a tour bus crash in the Bronx killed 15 passengers.
The driver of that bus, Ophadell Williams, allegedly was able to obtain a commercial license even though he'd used multiple names in the past and his regular license had been suspended in 1995.
DOT, Lawmakers Lead Queens Inspections
Meanwhile, local elected officials and the Department of Transportation are teaming up to conduct random tour bus inspections in Flushing, Queens through Saturday.
Each inspection takes about an hour. Drivers will have to go through a series of procedures to make sure the bus is safe to drive.
Inspectors are also checking for a valid driver's license.
"We will make sure they have a periodical check of the bus, the safety of the equipment and make sure the company hires qualified bus driver," said Queens Councilman Peter Koo.
"We need bus companies to know if they are going to take that many passengers and take that many passengers on the highway, they have to be safe and follow the rules," said Queens Assemblywoman Gracie Meng.
Five buses were checked out Friday.
A manager for one of those bus companies said he welcomes the safety inspections and calls them "a way to keep people on their toes."