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25 June 2013, 13:21
Disciplinary action is being started against a coach driver after a Hampshire woman took a photo apparently showing him using a mobile while driving.
Dawn Taylor, from Gosport, was among a group on their way back from a Blackpool trip last month.
The coach firm Shearings has made the following statement:
"We take all complaints about any aspect of our holidays very seriously. We take over a million people on holiday each year and are extremely proud of the good reputation that our drivers have with the vast majority of our customers.
"We have shared Mrs Taylor's very serious allegations with the driver's manager and the driver in question has been interviewed in line with our disciplinary procedures. This is a formal process which is ongoing.
"Any driver found in serious breach of our policy on this issue will be retrained immediately. Driver training is taken extremely seriously and we can assure Mrs Taylor that, as stated in our drivers' manual, and in line with the law, use of handheld mobiles whilst driving is against company policy. This will be raised with and re-iterated to all of our drivers in light of this allegation.
"Shearings holds annual seminars as well as defensive driving courses that all of our drivers attend. We are also proud to have been operating our own training programmes for around 20 years - even though formal driver training legislation was only introduced in the UK in 2008. All of our drivers have certificates of professional competence.
"We apologise that Mrs Taylor did not feel our initial response to her complaint was sufficient, we did try to outline all of this information in our letter to address her concerns and assure her that the matter was taken very seriously from the outset."