VANCOUVER / WASHINGTON, D.C. — Both the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the government of British Columbia have suspended operating authority for Vancouver-based Mi Joo Tour & Travel for a recent fatal bus crash in which nine passengers died.
Upon investigation, the FMCSA discovered that Mi Joo Tour & Travel failed to take basic measures to ensure that its drivers are properly rested for safe vehicle operations and has established a pattern and practice of scheduling and dispatching drivers on trips without regard to hours of service requirements.
On Dec. 30, 2012, Mi Joo Tour & Travel allowed its driver, Haeng Kyu Hwang, to drive after having been on duty for well beyond the 70-hour maximum of service permitted under federal regulations. That same date, Hwang’s vehicle was involved in a crash that resulted in nine passenger fatalities and 39 passenger injuries.
The company also failed to provide to the Transportation Ministry of British Columbia records confirming that drivers are working no longer than they are supposed to. Mi Joo had already shut down operations in Canada voluntarily.
The B.C. ministry noted that Mi Joo had not been involved in any major road accidents and had a “satisfactory” road safety rating for the last three years prior to the accident.
Mark Scheer, Mi Joo’s lawyer, already has said Mi Joo had questions about the accuracy of U.S. complaints that led to the ban on the company’s operations. In an e-mail exchange on Friday, Jan. 11, he said he had no comment on the latest developments.
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FMCSA orders Canadian operator to cease U.S. operations
Source: The Globe and Mail; Metro Magazine