It is the policy of The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) to promote safe travel by students who participate in certain university organized and sponsored activities or events.
1. 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:
a. An activity or event organized and sponsored by the university. An activity or event is considered to be organized and sponsored if it has been planned and funded by the University and approved in writing by the designated administrator. The types of activities and events covered by this policy include course related field trips, recreational sports club trips, departmental sponsored trips, the activities of sponsored student organizations, and meetings of academic organizations where a student is officially representing the University; and
b. The activity or event is located more than 25 miles from the University; and
c. (i) Travel to the activity or event is funded and undertaken using a vehicle owned or leased by the University; or
(ii) Attendance at the activity or event is required by a registered student organization and approved in accordance with this Policy.
2. Registered student organizations that require their members to travel 25 miles or more from the University to attend an activity or event covered by this policy must obtain prior written approval for the proposed travel by the designated administrator.
3. The following provisions will apply to all travel covered by this policy.
a. All Motor Vehicle Travel.
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, whichever is lower. Where applicable, all travel participants are required to comply with The University of Texas System Business Procedure Memorandum 16-05-02, including, but not limited to, provisions concerning vehicle passenger capacity.
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.
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.
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 federal or state law or regulations or guidelines promulgated by the university, whichever is lower, without scheduled rest stops or overnight stops.
b. Travel Using a Vehicle Owned or Leased by the University.
In addition to those provisions in Item 3.a., each vehicle owned or leased by the University must be subject to scheduled periodic service and maintenance by qualified persons and comply with all applicable requirements of The University of Texas System Business Procedure Memorandum 16-05-02.
All operators of vehicles owned or leased by the University shall be employees of the University and shall have a valid operator’s license for the operation of the particular vehicle. In addition, operators shall have a current Motor Vehicle Record on file with the designated office of the University.
c. Travel Using Rented Vehicles.
In addition to those provisions specified in Item 3.a., the rental, use, and operation of all rented vehicles shall comply, where applicable, with the State contracts for rental cars and all applicable requirements of The University of Texas System Business Procedure Memorandum 16-05-02.
d. Travel by Common Carrier.
When a common carrier (bus, airline, etc.) is used for student travel covered by this policy, all reasonable steps will be taken to assure the travel is undertaken in conformance with this policy and all applicable federal, state, local, and university regulations.
4. Students are responsible for abiding by the rules and regulations contained in the UTEP Handbook of Operating Procedures while they are traveling. The sponsoring department may promulgate additional rules concerning expectations of students while on the trip.
5. As part of the approval process, all participants must sign an appropriate Release and Indemnification Agreement. All persons driving personal vehicles for travel covered by this policy must agree to comply with the requirements of 3.a. and produce some evidence of a valid operator’s license for the vehicle to be used, current proof of liability insurance and Texas state inspection certificate.