Threatening Breach of Peace on Public Bus Systems in Utah

The Bus Passenger Safety Act of Utah is “essential to the comfort, safety and well-being of bus passengers” and anyone threatening breach of peace while riding the public bus systems may end up with criminal charges.

Public transportation

Photo by : Garrett

Those who utilize the public bus systems in Utah are likely to have stories of fellow passengers whose behavior was offensive, disturbing, or perhaps just a little odd. What type of behavior is allowed on the public bus systems and what constitutes threatening breach of peace? Violent behavior that involves physical assault or firearm use is understandably against the law on public buses yet so is some behavior that Utah residents may expect to witness while riding on public transportation.

Threatening breach of peace

Utah Code 76-10-1506 describes behavior that is not permitted on a public bus such as “if the person:

(a) threatens a breach of the peace, is disorderly, or uses obscene, profane, or vulgar language on a bus;

(b) is in or upon any bus while unlawfully under the influence of a controlled substance ( . . . )

(c) fails to obey a reasonable request or order of a bus driver, bus company representative, a nondrinking designee other than the driver ( . . . ) or other person in charge or control of a bus or terminal;

(d) ingests any controlled substance, unless prescribed by a physician or medical facility, in or upon any bus, or drinks intoxicating liquor in or upon any bus, except a chartered bus ( . . . ) or

(e) smokes tobacco or other products in or upon any bus, except a chartered bus.”

Removal from bus and possible criminal charges

If a person on a public bus shows any of the above behavior, the bus driver is allowed to physically remove said person from the bus with the help of fellow passengers if needed. The driver also has the option to contact authorities to detain them after they are removed. If law enforcement has to get involved, the person guilty of threatening breach of peace on a bus may face a class C misdemeanor, punishable by up to 90 days in jail and a fine up to $750.


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