January 12, 2013 in City

Canada follows U.S. in bus company ban

Steven Dubois Associated Press

PORTLAND – The Vancouver, B.C.-based company whose bus crashed on an icy Oregon highway last month, killing nine passengers, has been banned from Canadian roads, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure said Friday.

The ministry’s Commercial Vehicle Safety Enforcement branch investigated Mi Joo Tour & Travel after the Dec. 30 crash east of Pendleton and determined it wasn’t following British Columbia law regarding pre-trip inspections and driver hours of service. The ministry said the suspension of bus operations is effective immediately.

The action comes three days after the U.S. Department of Transportation revoked the company’s authority to provide passenger service in the United States.

The U.S. agency, among several allegations, said the company routinely dispatches drivers without ensuring they are properly rested. Their investigation found that driver Haeng Kyu Hwang had been on duty for 92 hours in the eight-day stretch before the crash, exceeding the 70-hour federal limit.

Canadian officials said Friday that Mi Joo Tour & Travel had a satisfactory road-safety rating for the past three years and had not been involved in any major accidents. The company must provide a detailed response to the ministry by Feb. 28 if it wants its buses to regain access to Canadian roads.

The Oregon State Police and National Transportation Safety Board have yet to say what caused the crash that also left 38 injured, including the driver.

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