Mayor LaToya Cantrell issued a press release this afternoon warning party bus operators that the City is set to begin stronger enforcement of the rules, regulations, and laws pertaining to their operation.
“We are ramping up enforcement in all areas,” Cantrell stated. “Now is the time to make sure you are in compliance. This is a public safety issue and public safety is a top priority.”
In order to operate a party bus in New Orleans:
- The vehicle must be registered and approved by the Department of Safety and Permits.
- The driver of the bus must be properly licensed by the City of New Orleans. This means they must be licensed to operate a large commercial vehicle, have a clean driving record, have passed a drug and background check, and completed a defensive driving course.
- The party bus must carry all relevant insurance. For a vehicle carrying up to 15 passengers, this includes a $1,500,000 Combined Single Limit coverage policy. For vehicles carrying 16 or more passengers, the requirement is a $5,000,000 Combined Single Limit coverage policy. All party buses must also carry $1,000,000 in General Liability coverage.
The following are prohibited for use as a party bus in New Orleans:
- Busses with the tops cut off – these are considered a safety hazard and would not pass the required vehicle inspection.
- Trailers hitched to vehicles – this is considered a safety hazard. Trailers with license plates can be used for hauling only – they are uninsurable for carrying passengers.
- Vehicles with a portable toilet – This is a sanitation hazard.
Residents and tourists who are considering renting a party bus can check that the bus has received their Certificate of Public Necessity and that the driver is properly licensed by searching onestopapp.nola.gov.