Page last updated at 19:56 GMT, Saturday, 13 February 2010

Man refused bus ride in Dorset over tin of fence paint

Bus stop - generic image
Yellow Buses said paint had caused damage to vehicles in the past

A bus driver told a passenger he could not board his vehicle because he was carrying a tin of fence paint.

Brian Wakley, from Sandford in Dorset, was 10 miles (16km) from home when told he could not board the 1B Bournemouth to Poole Transdev Yellow Buses service.

The retired office worker said he was told the £3.75 can of non-toxic green paint breached regulations.

The company said paint was banned from being carried on to its vehicles because it could cause a mess.

Mr Wakley, who said he was over 65, said: "It's absolutely diabolical. Millions of people rely on public transport to take home things like paint and DIY equipment.

'Against regulations'

"It was a five-litre sealed plastic pot. I know it was innocuous because I took the liberty of contacting the manufacturer.

"The driver said to me, 'I'm sorry you can't come aboard because you are carrying a banned substance'.

"I said, 'It's a can of paint'. He said it was against regulations."

The driver clearly felt that by allowing this gentleman on the bus with the paint it would breach our Conditions of Carriage
Ed Wills, Yellow Buses

He added: "You see yobs on buses eff-ing and blinding and yet here I am, a pensioner, carrying some paint. It makes me feel like my human rights have been violated."

After being left at the roadside, Mr Wakley called a friend to take him to his home near Wareham.

He later called the company and it confirmed its policy.

Ed Wills, Yellow Buses' head of operations, said: "I recognise that the issue of carrying paint on buses is something some people may think is a minor issue but, unfortunately, over the years we have experienced instances of paint being accidentally dropped by passengers and spilling over the floor, on to seats and splashing other passengers."

He added: "Rules can be open to interpretation and we rely on our drivers to exercise discretion when dealing with issues such as this.

"In this case the driver clearly felt that by allowing this gentleman on the bus with the paint it would breach our Conditions of Carriage."

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