Consistent with the requirements of Texas Education Code Section 51.950, each institution of The University of Texas System shall adopt a policy governing student travel. Such a policy, at a minimum, shall comply with the guidelines below and become effective upon approval by the appropriate Executive Vice Chancellor. Approved policies shall be published in the institutional Handbook of Operating Procedures and catalogs and filed with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
This Policy is applicable to student travel undertaken by one or more currently enrolled students to reach an activity or event that meets all of the following criteria:
An activity or event is considered to be organized and sponsored if it has been planned and funded by the institution and approved by an administrator designated by the institution.
The activity or event is located more than 25 miles from the institution; and
(a) Travel to the activity or event is funded and undertaken using a vehicle owned or leased by the institution; or
(b) Attendance at the activity or event is required by a registered student organization and approved in accordance with Section 3 of this Policy.
Registered student organizations that require their members to travel 25 miles or more from the institution to attend an activity or event covered by this Policy must obtain prior written approval for the proposed travel by the institutional officer designated by the institution.
The policy adopted by an institution shall incorporate the following provisions concerning safety and modes of travel likely to be used by students:
Occupants of motor vehicles shall use seat belts or other approved safety restraint devices required by law or regulation at all times when the vehicle is in operation.
Occupants of motor vehicles shall not consume, possess, or transport any alcoholic beverages or illegal substances.
The total number of passengers in any vehicle at any time it is in operation shall not exceed the manufacturer’s recommended capacity or the number specified in applicable federal or State law or regulations, or applicable U. T. System policy, whichever is lower.
Each operator of a motor vehicle shall have a valid operator’s license and be trained as required by law to drive the vehicle that will be used, and comply with applicable requirements of The University of Texas System Administration Policy UTS157, Automobile Insurance Coverage for Officers and Employees and General Requirements for the Use of Vehicles.
Each motor vehicle must have a current proof of liability insurance card and State inspection certification, be equipped with all safety devices or equipment required by federal or State law or regulation, and comply with all other applicable requirements of federal or State law or regulations and any applicable U. T. System policy.
Operators of motor vehicles shall comply with all laws, regulations, and posted signs regarding speed and traffic control and shall not operate the vehicle for a continuous period that is longer than the maximum provided by guidelines promulgated by federal or State law or regulations or guidelines promulgated by the institution, whichever is lower, without scheduled rest stops or overnight stops.
Each vehicle owned or leased by an institution must be subject to scheduled periodic service and maintenance by qualified persons and comply with all applicable requirements of any U. T. System policy.
All operators of vehicles owned or leased by an institution shall be employees of the institution and shall have a valid operator’s license for the operation of the particular vehicle. In addition, operators of vehicles owned or leased by an institution shall only be operated by persons authorized to operate such vehicles in accordance with any U. T. System policy.
Each institution shall adopt rules concerning the use of rental vehicles for travel covered by this Policy. The rules shall comply, where applicable, with the State contracts for rental cars and all applicable requirements of any U. T. System policy.
When a common carrier is used for student travel covered by this policy, each institution shall take reasonable steps to assure the travel is undertaken in conformance with this Policy.
December 10, 2004