The U.S. Department of Transportation ordered a Canadian tour company that operated the bus that crashed and killed nine people — several from the Puget Sound region — in Oregon early last week, to cease operations in the United States.
USDOT’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration investigators found that before the crash, Mi Joo Tour & Travel of Coquitlam, B.C., had violated several safety regulations that may have made the Dec. 30 crash more likely to happen.
The company had not been recording its drivers’ hours of driving time, rest breaks and off-duty periods as mandated by U.S. safety regulations. According to a USDOT statement, the company had “established a pattern and practice of scheduling and dispatching drivers on trips without regard to hours of service requirements.”
In the case of the man who drove the bus off of Interstate 84, Haeng Kyu Hwang had worked 92 hours in the seven days preceding the crash–well beyond the 70-hour maximum hours of service per week permitted under federal regulations.
The company had also been fined several times for a failure to meet drug and alcohol testing requirements. USDOT fined the company more than once in 2010 and suspended its operations for two months in 2011 until it paid another fine that year.