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UPPS 05.05.04 - 15-Passenger Vans

15-Passenger Vans

UPPS No. 05.05.04
Issue No. 2
Effective Date: 6/17/2019
Next Review Date: 10/01/2023 (E4Y)
Sr. Reviewer: Director, Environmental Health, Safety, and Risk Management


    1. The goal of this policy is to ensure the safe travel of students, faculty, staff, and guests for university functions to and from events and activities at Texas State University. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has determined that rollover crash risks are greatly increased with 10 or more people riding in a 15-passenger van. This policy provides minimum safety requirements for driving 15-passenger vans owned, rented, leased or borrowed for use by Texas State faculty, staff, or students.

    2. All drivers must meet the requirements stated in UPPS No. 05.05.02, Driver Selection, as well as driver requirements in this policy.

    3. When leasing or renting 15-passenger vans to be used for transporting passengers, equipment, or towing, all requirements of this policy, as well as any requirements of the rental or leasing contract, must be met.

    4. All owned 15-passenger vans must be on the university’s vehicle insurance policy. Rented or leased vans must have insurance as part of the rental or lease agreement. Borrowed vans must have their insurance coverage reviewed by Environmental Health, Safety, and Risk Management (EHSRM) in advance of use to determine if Texas State personnel will be covered during usage.


    1. Departments utilizing 15-passenger vans must enforce the following requirements or utilize alternative forms of transportation:

      1. Experienced Drivers – Only drivers who have experience driving 15-passenger vans on a regular basis should drive such vans for Texas State. Per the recommendation of the NHTSA, it is recommended that drivers have commercial driver’s licenses with a passenger endorsement. No students may drive 15-passenger vans, including student athletes.

      2. Training – All drivers must complete a classroom and hands-on training course arranged by EHSRM. At the discretion of EHSRM, a driver with a current commercial driver’s license may be exempted from training for the term of the license. Training courses must be repeated every three years. Training courses will need to be scheduled well in advance. Any costs will be borne by the driver’s department.

      3. Tire Inspection – Prior to each trip, the tires must be inspected to assure they are properly inflated and not worn. Maintenance, repair, or replacement of tires must be carried out prior to any trip if the inspection shows any issues.

      4. Cellphones – The van driver shall not use a cellphone while operating a vehicle including hands-free operation.

      5. Number of Occupants – The number of occupants in a 15-passenger van shall not exceed nine, including the driver.

      6. Texas State-owned 15-passenger vans will have the back seats removed.

      7. Seat Belts Three-Points – Seat belts and other occupant restraint devices shall be worn at all times by all occupants. Any malfunctioning seat belts shall be repaired or replaced immediately.

      8. Trips exceeding 350 miles or six hours one-way must include two qualified, trained, and university-approved drivers per van.

        1. A navigator, who can be the additional driver, must be included for long trips and is optional for all other times 15-passenger vans are operated.
      9. Limit Driving Time – All operators should take 30-minute breaks, every four hours and not drive between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. The maximum number of hours that an operator can drive in a 24-hour period is 10 hours.

      10. Documentation – A Journey Management Plan must be completed for each trip using a 15-passenger van. Blank plans can be found at the EHSRM website.

      11. Excessive Loading – Drivers and all passengers traveling in 15-passenger vans must refrain from excessive loading of the vehicle. Equipment and baggage shall not be piled higher than seat level, and weight and distribution should comply with manufacturer’s guidelines in the owner’s manual.

      12. Towing – Towing is prohibited, unless the vehicle is properly outfitted by the manufacturer with a towing package.

      13. Anytime a 15-passenger van is operated, all passengers must sit as far forward in the vehicle as possible in front of the rear axle and in an arrangement to distribute the load. Any cargo carried inside the vehicle must be positioned as far forward as practical. When possible, cargo should be positioned forward of the rear axle.

      14. Using the roof or exterior of these vehicles to carry loads of any kind is prohibited.

    2. All accidents involving any vehicle owned, leased, hired, or borrowed by Texas State should be reported immediately to the direct supervisor of the employee responsible for the trip, local law enforcement authority, and EHSRM at 512.245.3616.


    1. Reviewers of this UPPS include the following:

      Director, Environmental Health, Safety, and Risk ManagementOctober 1 E4Y
      Associate Director, AthleticsOctober 1 E4Y
      Dean of StudentsOctober 1 E4Y

    This UPPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State policy and procedure from the date of this document until superseded.

    Director, Environmental Health, Safety and Risk Management; senior reviewer of this UPPS

    Vice President for Finance and Support Services