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Metropolitan Digest / LOS ANGELES COUNTY NEWS IN BRIEF

LOS ANGELES : 28 LAX Shuttle Vans Cited for Mechanical Problems

March 11, 1994

Of 41 passenger vans inspected at Los Angeles International Airport, Public Utilities Commission officials cited 28 for mechanical problems, including poor steering, bad brakes and bald tires.

"Unfortunately, these numbers are quite high," PUC Commissioner Jessie Knight said. "We are committed to assuring that any shuttle business we authorize will provide safe and good customer service."

PUC officials discovered Thursday that one company was operating illegally after it had been suspended by the regulatory agency because it had no insurance. One driver was cited because he had no driver's license.

"We thought we had made progress, but today's results show we have to keep doing these inspections," said Larry McNeely of the PUC.

Because of numerous passenger complaints, Knight said, the state agency will open a satellite office at the airport on April 1 to increase monitoring of the vans. The problems have included rude drivers, overcharging and passengers being delayed as drivers circle the airport in search of more customers.

Consumers with complaints may call (800) FON-4-PUC.

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