As announced last Friday, the school bus manufacturer, Blue Bird Body Co., is recalling nearly 3,900 school buses because of a defect that leads to a potential fire hazard. According to reports, a starter cable could rub against a power steering hose, and the resulting contact could create a short circuit effect; the short circuit could in turn lead to a fire. If a bus catches fire because of this abrasion, then Blue Bird could face a personal injury lawsuit.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the recall affects 2004 to 2006 Blue Bird Vision School Bus models. Those buses were manufactured from June 2003 through December 2004. The NHTSA’s recall report can be found here. The investigation began after customers discovered the “abrasion on some cables”, at which point Blue Bird began looking into the problem. The manufacturer discovered that approximately 5% of its buses had “chafing on the starter cable.” Blue Bird has asked owners to inspect the buses in order to see if there is enough space between the cable and the hose. If the owners find that there isn’t enough space, then Blue Bird will install a clamp to remedy the issue.
As a Plantation Personal Injury Attorney, it seems that there is a serious potential for injuries because of this defect. What makes this case even more dangerous is the fact that school buses transport young children. Hopefully the owners receive word of the recall before any fires occur. If Blue Bird can repair all of the defective models prior to any incidents, then the company should be able to avoid a personal injury lawsuit as well as any product liability lawsuits.
It is also worth noting that this is not Blue Bird’s first recall in the past twelve months. The company had issued a recall for a potential fuel leak as well as another recall for a different short circuit problem. Thus, there seems to be a recurring pattern here, one which needs to be remedied immediately. As a Plantation Personal Injury Lawyer, I feel so strongly about this because there really is no margin for error when a vehicle is transporting dozens of young children. Hopefully this latest recall prompts Blue Bird to improve their safety testing program to prevent future events like this from reoccurring.