MINNEAPOLIS - With prom season underway and wedding season around the corner, a lot of people will be using party buses.
Some parents worry about underage drinking aboard party buses, which are commonly used for bachelor party bar-hopping.
David Jardel puts an emphasis on "new" and "nice" for his company DJ Party Bus. And he says he is well aware a lot of parents put an emphasis on "safe."
“We just want to make sure the people out there are having fun, and they're safe and sound,” Jardel said.
John Potts is a parent of two teens and a youth advocate -- and he's warning parents this prom season to be diligent if their teens and their friends use this form of mobile entertainment on the night of grand march.
"Basically, you've got 50 teenagers with a bus driver who's a chaperone,” Potts said. “There should be greater communication between the bus driver and the parents. I believe people should do a review of the contract. I believe that people should be looking at insurance policies. I think parents should be talking to one another.”
Potts says that's especially important in Minnesota, where party buses are not heavily regulated. A push by Minneapolis City Attorney Susan Segal to change the laws in 2015 fizzled in the state legislature.
Potts has reviewed party bus contracts and wants parents to know: “Basically the liability all falls on the party that signs the contract."
Jardel says his drivers are trained in how to handle teens.
“They have certain guidelines they have to follow. Checking IDs. Making sure, especially during the prom season, that kids are not trying to sneak anything on the bus,” Jardel said.
That includes making sure liquids they bring onto the bus are in sealed containers.
When it comes to liability, Jardel warns parents to make sure the companies they use are well insured, which is another part of his business he says he made a priority.
Party buses in Minnesota are regulated just like a charter bus. Segal wanted to strengthen the state's laws on adult entertainment and underage drinking aboard party buses. She says they will likely try again next year.
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