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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation H-17-051
Synopsis: On October 23, 2016, about 5:16 a.m., a motorcoach ran into the rear of a stopped combination vehicle in the westbound lanes of Interstate 10 (I-10), outside Palm Springs, California. About 9 minutes before the crash, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) initiated a traffic break for both eastbound and westbound traffic on I-10 in support of utility work being performed west of the crash location. At that time, a combination vehicle was traveling westbound on I-10. It stopped when it reached the traffic queue that had formed as a result of the break. After a break that lasted about 7 minutes, the CHP released westbound traffic. The combination vehicle remained stopped and was stationary as westbound traffic resumed normal flow. About 2 minutes after the traffic break ended, a 47-passenger motorcoach was traveling on westbound I-10 in the lane in which the combination vehicle was stopped. The motorcoach, which was occupied by a driver and 42 passengers, struck the rear of the combination vehicle’s semitrailer. As a result of the crash, the bus driver and 12 passengers died, and the truck driver and 30 passengers were injured. The crash investigation focused on the following safety issues: traffic break policies, obstructive sleep apnea and diabetes in commercial vehicle drivers, oversight of commercial vehicle drivers and carriers, emergency egress, and collision avoidance systems. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) makes new safety recommendations to the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Tri-State Collision LLC, American Trucking Associations, Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, International Association of Chiefs of Police, and National Sheriffs’ Association. The NTSB reiterates recommendations to the FMCSA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and commercial vehicle manufacturers. The NTSB reiterates and reclassifies one recommendation to the FMCSA.
Recommendation: TO TRI-STATE COLLISION, LLC: Use data from all available driver-monitoring systems to improve your oversight of your drivers’ compliance with safety regulations.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Open - Acceptable Response
Mode: Highway
Location: Palm Springs, CA, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Accident #: HWY17MH005
Accident Reports: Preliminary Report: HWY17MH005Motorcoach Collision With Combination Vehicle After Traffic Break on Interstate 10, Palm Springs, California
Report #: HAR-17-04
Accident Date: 10/23/2016
Issue Date: 11/21/2017
Date Closed:
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: Tri-State Collision LLC (Open - Acceptable Response)

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: Tri-State Collision LLC
Date: 2/21/2018
Response: We are encouraged that you are committed to improving your corporate safety program and we note that you are in the process of installing electronic logging devices, are working with a safety professional to train drivers and monitor their hours of service, and have implemented an employee counseling program. We look forward to receiving further information from you to verify that all systems are implemented and that they show safety improvement. Until then, Safety Recommendation H-17-51 is classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: Tri-State Collision LLC
Date: 12/4/2017
Response: -From Mark Dewberry: 1. Tri-State Collision dba Berry Transportation has hired an experienced safety professional to assist in training our drivers, and to help monitor driver hours of service violations. 2. We are transitioning to Electronic Logging Devices. 3. We have implemented a employee counseling program.

From: NTSB
To: Tri-State Collision LLC
Date: 11/21/2017
Response: The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged by Congress with investigating every civil aviation accident in the United States and significant accidents in other modes of transportation—railroad, highway, marine, and pipeline. We determine the probable cause of the accidents and issue safety recommendations aimed at preventing future accidents. In addition, we carry out special studies concerning transportation safety and coordinate the resources of the federal government and other organizations to provide assistance to victims and their family members affected by major transportation disasters. On October 31, 2017, the NTSB adopted its report Motorcoach Collision With Combination Vehicle After Traffic Break on Interstate 10, Palm Springs, California, October 23, 2016, NTSB/HAR-17/04. The details of this accident investigation and the resulting safety recommendations may be found in the attached report, which can also be accessed at Among the Safety Recommendations is one issued to Tri-State Collision LLC, which can be found on page 52 of the report. The NTSB is vitally interested in this recommendation because it is designed to prevent accidents and save lives. We would appreciate a response within 90 days, detailing the actions you have taken or intend to take to implement this recommendation.