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Ride the Ducks Seattle to Suspend Operations Pending Investigation

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Olivia Finger2 years ago

According to Reuters, a Washington state commission suspended an amphibious tour service operator in Seattle on Monday while it investigates a crash involving one of the company’s vehicles and a charter bus carrying international students. The crash left people five dead.

Details of the Suspension

The State of Washington’s Utilities and Transportation Commission has issued a suspension of all Ride the Ducks operations in the state, spokeswoman Amanda Maxwell said. The company had already voluntarily suspended operations.

National Transportation Safety Board member Earl Weener said that the Atlanta-based Ride the Duck International issued a statement to its customers that the housing around the axle was a potential failure point and is recommended repairs and additional monitoring.

Weener added that the left front axle of the amphibious vehicle was shaved off; however, it is unclear as of now how that occurred. The event could have possibly been avoided, Weener went on to say, by welding collars around the shaft.

Inspections and recommended repairs were not done on the vehicle in question. It is unclear whether or not the Seattle franchise received warning from Ride the Ducks International in 2013.

Ride the Ducks International issued a statement on September 28 regarding the front axle repair, saying it “had no reason to believe that Seattle has not complied with the bulletin”

About the Fatal Accident

On September 24, a Ride the Ducks truck collided with a bus carrying employees and students from North Seattle College, killing five and sending about 50 people to various local hospitals.

While initial reports indicated four deaths, the fifth victim died of injuries sustained in the accident at Harborview Medical Center on September 27, several news stations reported.

Rides the Ducks of Seattle is an independently owner licensee that buys and refurbishes world-war II era trucks. The vehicle being investigated was built in 1945 and refurbished in 2005. The company has over 100 similar trucks currently in service nationwide.


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