New rules and regulations for bus passengers and drivers. | Miquel A. Cañellas

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From this summer, if the regulation is passed in time, passengers on inter-urban buses in Majorca and the Balearics will no longer be allowed to travel if they are in swimming costumes or do not have a top on. The regional government has presented a draft for this new regulation which will also prohibit eating and drinking on buses with the exception of water - and then only water "sin gas"; so sparkling water will also be on the banned list.

The regulation, in the process of being drafted definitively, will also prohibit any form of equipment for listening to music. Drivers, however, will be able to have music on or to listen to the radio, so long as this at "very moderate" volume.

Further aspects of the regulation have to do with bikes and pets (by which it surely means dogs). Bikes can be transported on the understanding that they are the owner's responsibility but will need to be placed in bus storage compartments or in an external rack. There is to be a pilot project to assess the taking of dogs onto buses. The results of this pilot will determine whether to give overall permission or not.

The drafting has completed its initial phase and is now open to public consultation and to suggestions from bus users, bus operators and the Balearic Council of Land Transport. The ultimate drafting is the responsibility of the board of the Transport Consortium and it is hoped that the regulation will be signed off by May.