DDOT director responds to distracted bus driver concerns

Posted at 8:01 PM, Jan 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-28 20:01:10-05

DETROIT (WXYZ) — The director of the Detroit Department of Transportation is responding after a 7 Action News report exposed a city bus driver allegedly taking videos of himself while behind the wheel. The driver is now underinvestigation and the director is saying termination is possible.

"The current status of this employee – he currently is not driving," said Angelica Jones, DDOT director.

RELATED: DDOT driver recording video messages while driving raises safety concerns

That's because of the investigation launched after a Taking Action For You story aired Monday night.

"It was only brought to my attention through channel 7 story yesterday," Jones said.

It's the story of a DDOT driver allegedly making videos while behind the wheel of a city bus. The driver's face and name isn't being released because he has not been charged with a crime, however, his actions may lead to his firing.

"The policy is zero telephone use as far as talking on the phone," Jones said. "They can not be behind the seat talking on a cell phone. It’s against transit regulations. This behavior is not representative of the department. DDOT has upwards of 500 drivers. This is incident was surprising to all of us."

7 Action News asked the DDOT director of any past incidents on the driver's record.

"Since we’re under investigation, I can not state in regards to what he has on his record," she said. "As far as I have been shared with my leadership of the operations division, they have told me this is a great driver, he hasn’t had many incidents at all."

7 Action News also asked Jones about the departments background check after a Secretary of State record check on his driving history showed citations in 2006 of open intoxicants and 2007 of disobeying a traffic signal.

"Those may be beyond the statutory limits for us of hiring him," Jones said. "He was hired in 2017 so therefore those incidents may not have applied to him being employed."

Regardless, the multiple videos are now under review. The driver is not on leave but his responsibilities no longer include driving.