San Francisco's luxury bus service Leap suspended by regulators

Regulators tell Leap to stop offering luxury bus rides to Bay Area commuters until it meets state requirements

Leap, a luxury bus service geared toward commuters in the San Francisco area, has suspended operations after receiving a cease-and-desist notice from state regulators.

“While we believe that our service is in full compliance with all state and local laws, we have decided to halt operations until we clear this final hurdle,” the company said in a statement.

“Various clerical issues” have delayed it from receiving a state permit, said Leap, whose buses offer roomy seats and Wi-Fi access. The buses also sell snacks, organic juices and premium iced coffee to passengers, who pay as much as $6 for a ride within the city.

In March, Leap received conditional permission to operate between San Francisco and San Mateo counties, according to California Public Utilities Commission spokesman Christopher Chow. But, he said, it has failed to meet requirements including insurance, “which is a major safety matter.”

According to the cease-and-desist notice issued May 11, Leap failed to provide evidence that it has public liability and property damage insurance and workers’ compensation insurance.

The company also didn’t show evidence that it was properly testing its drivers for alcohol and controlled substances, and it hadn’t requested inspections from the California Highway Patrol or enrolled in a state program that would let it monitor employees’ driving records, the notice said.

Leap did not immediately return calls seeking comment, but it said in its statement that its service would be suspended “at least through the end of this week.”

“We hope to be back on the road in no time,” it said.

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