Even some transpotainment owners want the City of Nashville to regulate their business

Posted at 5:15 PM, Jul 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-30 19:12:39-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Ever since a man from Michigan fell off a party bus early Thursday morning, there have been calls for new regulations for so-called "transpotainment" vehicles.

22-year-old Jacob Day fell off the party bus face first, and then his legs were run over by the bus. As for keeping these companies in check, a Metro Councilman calls Lower Broadway the Wild Wild West. "There are effectively no rules," said Councilman Freddie O'Connell. "We don’t have anything to tighten right now, right? That’s the issue with Transportainment."

And you may be surprised to read, the owner of The Nashville Tractor agrees. "The city doesn’t have authority to do safety inspections, to do background checks on drivers. Some very basic essentials that might have alleviated these problems," said Michael Winter, who also serves as President of the Nashville Transpotatinment Association.

He says there are common sense ways to keep everyone safe. "The city has a history of working collaboratively with the operators to build regulation that makes sense for all involved," said Winter.

The only problem is, it's the city that has limits. "It’s about 15 passengers, anything over that, the city loses their authority to regulate those vehicles, and it falls back on the state," he said.

And so far, the state has been unwilling to allow Metro-Nashville to step in. O'Connell assumes legislators working in the state's capitol city are seeing all of this, too. "And ideally, part of what you do in governing is trying to respond to crisis and tragedy," said O'Connell.

O'Connell also wants the city to be able to limit the number of transpotainment vehicles on the road and give incentives.

Councilman Freddie O’Connell also wants the city to be able to limit the number of transpotainment vehicles on the road -- and incentivize the companies that are playing by the rules and not be nuisances.