A BUS company has been ordered to cut its fleet after a string of safety warnings.
Barnsley-based Yorkshire Traction, which has a depot on Penistone Road, Waterloo, operates 15 services around Huddersfield.
It also has school runs to Kirkburton Middle, Shelley High and Colne Valley High.
At the third public inquiry in four years involving the firm, West Yorkshire Deputy Traffic Commissioner Mark Hinchliffe cut the number of vehicles on the firm's operating licence from 350 to 250. The firm actually has 290 vehicles.
He said the sheer size of Yorkshire Traction's ageing fleet meant workers could not reach the required maintenance standards. The inquiry found that regular safety checks, which should have taken place every three weeks, were taking up to 12 to be carried out.
The problems were made worse by a staff member at Huddersfield - who has since left the company - falsely filling in wall charts to suggest checks were being carried out on time.
Despite a series of formal warnings given to Yorkshire Traction since 2000, traffic inspectors found the company was continually failing to maintain vehicles adequately.
During a number of checks at regional depots made by appointment throughout March this year, inspectors still found problems with vehicles.
They handed out a number of immediate prohibitions, which meant buses had to be taken off the road.
Mr Hinchliffe said the company was looking at the issues and did not ignore faults.
But he said in a report: "This is a case where the size and age of the fleet has defeated the efforts of management and others to achieve a high standard of maintenance."
He added: "A significant number of safety-critical and avoidable prohibitions have been issued and time gaps between safety inspections in relation to a significant number of vehicles have become significantly stretched."
Mr Hinchliffe added: "Not all staff have been responsible and competent."
The licence will be looked at again in 12 months.
A company spokesman said there would be no impact on services or staffing levels in Huddersfield as a result of the ruling.
Asked whether he feared the inquiry had tarnished the firm's reputation he said: "It may have done a bit of damage to that.
"But at least we can say there's no effect on the service we are offering the public."