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Dec 28,2007
Federal regulators ground Dallas bus fleet
by UPI

DALLAS -- A U.S. transportation agency closed a Dallas bus company following a fatal crash and alleged repeated violations of drive-time regulations.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said Dallas's Tornado Bus Co. is an "imminent hazard" and accused the company of permitting its employees to drive longer than regulations permit, The Dallas Morning News said Friday.

A Tornado bus driving from Chicago to Dallas on Nov. 25 crossed the median and crashed into a pickup truck and was later broadsided by a freight truck. The accident killed three passengers and the pickup driver and injured nearly three dozen people.

Federal regulators allege the driver of the bus violated hours-of-service rules in the Nov. 25 accident. The company also allegedly violated safety regulations requiring an alternate driver be on board during long trips, the Morning News said.

The company incurred more than $60,000 in fines since 2001 for violating hours-of-service regulations and for falsifying driving logs.

The safety administration, however, ranked the Tornado Bus Co. in the top 25 percent of all bus and truck companies for driver and vehicle safety and found serious violations in only 1 percent of its inspections over the past 25 years, the newspaper said.

Copyright © 2007, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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