In April, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration deployed more than 50 specially trained safety investigators to look into “high-risk” passenger carriers, and that effort, known as “Operation Quick Strike,” has resulted in five bus carriers being shuttered for safety violations—so far.
The agency has attributed the closures to the operators’ failure to comply with federal Hours of Service regulations, defective equipment, and other violations that contribute to those carriers’ being declared “an imminent hazard to public safety.”
In the case of Kearns, Utah-based Salt Lake Shuttles, the FMCSA reported that, among other serious safety violations, the company put plastic grocery bags on one emergency exit as well as glue and/or tape on another, rendering the emergency exits inoperable.
The Salt Lake shutdown was the fifth closure of a passenger carrier since “Operation Quick Strike” began in April. During that time the FMCSA shuttered bus companies in the District of Columbia, Georgia, Ohio and New York. Since the beginning of 2013, FMCSA has shut down a total of 12 bus companies and seven trucking companies. The agency has also declared three commercial driver’s license holders as imminent hazards, blocking them from operating in interstate commerce.
Clearly, the need for such enforcement actions is necessary, as was illustrated by the tragic deaths of two passengers of a Cardinal Coach charter bus, which crashed April 11 en route to the Choctaw Casino Resort in Durant, Okla. According to police reports, the vehicle lost control on northbound State Highway 161 near the Beltline Road exit and crashed into a concrete median barrier.
The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson has extensive experience investigating catastrophic commercial vehicle crashes, including 18-wheeler crashes. The firm was part of the legal team representing families of several victims killed in the 2005 crash of a charter bus carrying elderly nursing home residents out of Hurricane Rita’s path. In that case, an extensive investigation revealed numerous safety, maintenance and design problems that contributed to the tragedy. Mr. Branson and other attorneys negotiated an $80 million settlement on behalf of the victims’ families.
The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson provides legal representation to victims of trucking and other commercial vehicle accidents. Whether the cause of the collision is driver fatigue, improper truck maintenance, and/or improper screening, training and supervision of drivers, the Dallas truck accident lawyers at The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson have the experience, resources and technical abilities to determine what happened and who should be held responsible.<Back