V C Section 12523.5 General Public Paratransit Driver s Certificate

General Public Paratransit Driver's Certificate

12523.5.  (a) No person shall operate a general public paratransit vehicle unless he or she has in his or her possession a valid driver's license of the appropriate class endorsed for passenger transportation when operating a vehicle designed, used, or maintained for carrying more than 10 persons including the driver and either (1) a certificate issued by the department to permit the operation of a general public paratransit vehicle, or (2) a certificate issued by the department to drive a schoolbus or school pupil activity bus pursuant to Section 12517.

(b) Applicants for a certificate to drive a general public paratransit vehicle shall pay a fee to the Department of the California Highway Patrol of twenty-five dollars ($25) for an original certificate and twelve dollars ($12) for a renewal certificate. Applicants for an original certificate shall present evidence that they have successfully completed a driver training course consisting of a minimum of 40 hours of instruction within the previous two years. The instruction shall have covered applicable laws and regulations and defensive driving practices, a minimum of eight hours of certified defensive driving, and a minimum of 20 hours of behind-the-wheel training in a vehicle to be used as a general public paratransit vehicle. Applicants seeking to renew a certificate valid for driving a general public paratransit vehicle shall present evidence that they have received two hours of refresher training during each 12 months of driver certificate validity.

(c) The driver certificate shall be issued only to applicants qualified by examinations prescribed by the Department of Motor Vehicles and the Department of the California Highway Patrol. The examinations shall be conducted by the Department of the California Highway Patrol. The Department of Motor Vehicles may deny, suspend, or revoke a certificate valid for driving a general public paratransit vehicle for the causes specified in this code or the Education Code or in regulations adopted pursuant to this code or the Education Code.

(d) An operator of a general public paratransit vehicle shall do all of the following:

(1) Use seat belts.

(2) Refrain from smoking.

(3) Report any accident reportable under Section 16000 to the Department of the California Highway Patrol.

(e) A person holding a valid certificate to permit the operation of a general public paratransit vehicle, issued prior to January 1, 1991, shall not be required to reapply for a certificate to satisfy any additional requirements imposed by the act adding this subdivision until the certificate he or she holds expires or is canceled or revoked.

Amended Ch. 1360, Stats. 1990. Effective January 1, 1991.