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3 Reasons to Reconfigure the Seating in Passenger Vans and Shuttles

By Nor Cal Vans Team | August 12, 2020

van seating configurationIf you’re in the business that requires the management of a vehicle fleet – such as a shuttle service, private tour bus, student transportation service, or retirement home – it can be difficult to find the right drivers with the right licenses for the job.

Did you know that you can customize the seating arrangement in your van so that anyone with a normal Class C driver’s license is eligible to drive it? It’s all based on reconfiguring the seating arrangement in your van. Below are 3 reason why it may be a good idea for your business.

1.  You won’t have to worry about a special driver’s license

If you have a large van with over 10 seats, your drivers need a class B license to drive it. But if there are 10 seats or less, anyone with a normal Class C license can drive it.

Class B License:

  • Required to operate any single vehicle that isn’t hitched to a trailer (commercial trucks that have an attached cab and cargo area with a combined weight greater than 26,000 pounds, as well as trucks with a detached towed cargo vehicle that weighs less than 10,000 pounds).
  • Straight trucks, Large buses (city buses, tourist buses, and school buses), Segmented buses, Box trucks (including delivery trucks and furniture trucks), Dump trucks with small trailers. Some Class C vehicles with the correct endorsements.

Class C License:

  • Required to operate a single vehicle with GVWR of less than 26,001 pounds or a vehicle towing another vehicle that weighs less than 10,000 pounds, or transports 16 or more passengers, including the driver.
  • Required to operate a single vehicle with GVWR of less than 26,001 pounds or a vehicle towing another vehicle that weighs less than 10,000 pounds, or transports 16 or more passengers, including the driver.

By changing your floor plan from a 12 or 15 passenger van to a 10-passenger van, you can avoid requiring your drivers to get a Class B license.

2.  You can customize the seating for your business

Instead of going back to the dealer, Nor Cal Vans can customize your seating arrangement and floor covering to fit your needs by removing and rearranging Ford OEM seats or upgraded Freedman Seats with our National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) certification.

The process of our conversion consists of:

  • Disabling seat mounts so seats can’t be re-installed
  • Covering floor pockets with OEM Floor or Altro floor covering
  • Modifications won’t void any factory warranty because of our Ford QVM status

3.  You won't have to go to the DMV

Once the van reconfiguration is done, it will have to be re-classified with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). In other words, someone can’t just take a few seats out of their van and suddenly be able to use a Class C license. The van itself has to actually be reclassified from type “BU” for “bus” to type “MPV” for “multi-purpose vehicle.”

Multi-purpose vehicles can also be referred to as multi-passenger vehicles and includes SUVs, recreational vehicles, pickups, panels, vans, campers, minibuses, sport utility vehicles, or other similar vehicles.

Nor Cal Vans has the credentials to officially reclassify the vehicle, then it is verified by the DMV.

Reconfiguring the seats can be a great option for vehicles in your fleet because you won’t have to worry about the driver getting a special license. And while a 15-passenger van is convenient, they can also be cumbersome and pose a safety risk to inexperienced van drivers and other road users.

Keep your fleet of vehicles functional and the passengers safe by letting Nor Cal Vans help you change the floor plans of your vehicles.

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Posted in Van Conversion Options