After 2 Fatal Megabus Accidents In A Week, Illinois Governor Wishes Feds Cared

Megabus is not having a very good week. The company settled a wrongful death lawsuit, agreeing to pay $5.1 million to the family of a man hit and killed by a Megabus in a downtown Chicago crosswalk in 2010. The day before the settlement was announced, another Megabus hit and killed another elderly pedestrian in a crosswalk just a few blocks away from where the 2010 accident occurred. Last week, a bus leaving Chicago hit an overpass, killing one passenger and injuring dozens more. Oh, and a Charlotte-bound bus caught fire in Georgia this week, too. The National Transportation Safety Board declined to investigate this week’s incidents, and Governor Pat Quinn isn’t happy about that.

Yesterday, Quinn issued a public letter to Secretary of Transportation (and former Illinois congressman) Ray Lahood, urging the federal government to investigate the company and find out whether the two accidents in such a short time were a coincidence, or part of a larger and problematic pattern at the company.

“We believe that a full federal investigation into the operations and history of the firm would provide a baseline for any policy changes or other considerations that might logically result from what is learned about these crashes,” he wrote.

In addition to the two accidents in Illinois, another bus caught fire in Georgia on Wednesday after blowing a tire. No passengers were hurt in that incident.

Quinn calls for Megabus investigation following 2 fatal accidents [Chicago Tribune]
Charlotte-bound Megabus catches fire in Georgia [Charlotte Observer]
Megabus settles lawsuit in 2010 Chicago incident [CBS]

RELATED:
Megabus Bursts Into Flames
Lost Megabus Driver Crashes Into Bridge While Checking GPS; Four Passengers Killed

Comments

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  1. bikeoid says:

    They may have a systematic problem with their current batch of tires.

    • Shadowfire says:

      I was wondering if maybe there was a problem with visibility from the driver’s seat, actually.

      • Alex d'Indiana says:

        The Trib article mentions that for why the bus killed one pedestrian – he didn’t see her in the mirror. The overpass pillar incident might have been a visibility problem too.

        But then the governor probably wants an investigation into why Megabus drivers are making these sorts of mistakes repeatedly. Are they getting proper training, are they doing too many schedules, are the buses properly equipped, etc.

        • Emperor Norton I says:

          The woman who was killed this week was hit by the outside mirror of the bus.
          There’s no way the driver didn’t see her!

  2. Alex d'Indiana says:

    I am actually going to buy tickets tonight to go to visit my parents in Indianapolis (from Chicago) and I didn’t know if I was going to do Greyhound or Megabus this time.

    Thanks for the heads up, Laura! I always take the upper-level on Megabus because I assumed drivers didn’t have trouble avoiding overpasses. One more thing to worry about.

  3. samonela says:

    I would have also accepted:

    2 Fatal Megabus Accidents In A Week, Feds Shrug

  4. Press1forDialTone says:

    Primary funder for MegaBus: Bain Capital
    I don’t know that but it would make sense.

    • Stickdude says:

      Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

    • TheMansfieldMauler says:

      Yep, it’s all a part of the ongoing Republican plot to kill people.

      • HomerSimpson says:

        Well if it involved exploding limos or private planes they’d be right on it, y’know.

        Tour buses for the “proles”? Not so much…

        • Stickdude says:

          You do know that current Secretary of Transportation – the one who should be investigating this – was appointed by Obama, right?

          D’oh!

    • longfeltwant says:
      • Stickdude says:

        I’m trying to see the connection between an article about Obama’s Secretary of Transportation failing to investigate a string of fatal accidents by a bus company and Bain Capital buying the company you work for.

        I just don’t see the connection at all. Please help?

        If Bain Capital was in any way associated with this bus company, don’t you think the Obama White House would be all over this investigation? Hell, by the time they were done investigating, we’d see campaign ads showing Romney personally driving each bus as it ran over crowds of senior citizens (produced by a super-PAC that is in no way associated with Obama, of course).

        • 180CS says:

          I read it as someone inserting a jab at Bain capital as best they could, and someone else commenting on how it reminded them that their company was just bought by Bain. Just a nice jab and an observatory comment.

      • adavis232002 says:

        I used to work for said company how long have you been there?

  5. fatediesel says:

    Another recent Megabus incident occurred on July 28 when a driverless Megabus with about two dozen passengers onboard rolled down one of the busiest streets in Iowa City and hit a traffic signal. Luckily there were no injuries.

    http://www.kcrg.com/news/local/Driverless-Bus-Rolls-Through-Iowa-City-Intersection-No-One-Injured-164946336.html

  6. cfoperfin says:

    Leaving Chicago? I’m pretty sure the bus left Chicago and crashed 245 miles downstate – nowhere near Chicago.

  7. shepd says:

    Megabus is cheap crap, none of this is surprising. Heck, they promise routes and then cancel them at the last minute, leaving travelers hanging in the wind looking for new travel plans.

    Run from their company, and if you see their buses, run from them, too!

  8. PragmaticGuy says:

    Unfortunately the NTSB has no enforcement powers all they can do is make recommendations. So, it’ll be up to the DOT to do something as to suspending their license if need be. And since the investigation will likely take a year probably not much will be done until then as they’re still innocent until proven guilty.

  9. Emperor Norton I says:

    I should also add that Megabus has no station so they used to pick up & drop off passengers in Chicago at the Canal St. Concourse entrance to Union Station & Amtrak [which owns Union Station] & the commuter railroads got fed up with Megabus passengers clogging up the sidewalk & the station, so they forced Megabus to move their stop to the sidewalk south on Canal next to the last section of the original station train shed where’s there’s no shelter of any kind!