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FedEx Cooperating With Authorities In Wake Of Fatal Tour Bus, Big Rig Crash

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STUDIO CITY (CBSLA.com) — FedEx says it’s cooperating with authorities investigating Thursday’s deadly bus crash in Northern California.

The shipping giant and the operator of the tour bus involved both released statements following the collision that killed at least 10 people and injured dozens more on Interstate 5 near the city of Orland.

Forty-four of 48 passengers on the bus were students en route to visit Humboldt State University in Arcata, and many remained missing Friday as officials continued to identify remains.

“It will take some time to fully understand exactly how this accident occurred and why,” FedEx Corp. Chairman and CEO Frederick Smith said Friday.

COMPLETE COVERAGE: Orland Bus Crash

“I want everyone to know that we at FedEx are committed to providing every resource necessary to assist investigators in their efforts to understand what happened.”

CBS2 investigative reporter David Goldstein has been looking into the safety records of both companies.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – FedEx Freight, the company that owned the truck, has been involved in 730 crashes nationwide in the past two years, resulting in 23 fatalities and 223 injuries.

That said, FedEx Freight has a satisfactory rating and good safety record – better than 99 percent of similar companies across the country.

But they do come in on the high side in two categories, according to federal officials.

Over the past two years, more than 45 percent of other companies have scored better in vehicle maintenance.

CBS2 found nearly 2,000 inspections with violations for inoperative or defective brakes.

Other inspections noted stop lamp violations, violations for brake lights and for worn tires.

It was unknown at press time if the truck involved in the accident was cited for any of the above violations. Investigators are expected to look into the vehicle’s history.

FedEx Freight also had a high number of violations for what’s called “driver fitness.”

CBS2 found violations for drivers who weren’t physically qualified to drive, including operating a commercial motor vehicle without a commercial driver license and without a medical certificate in the drivers’ possession.

The company had no comment on the violations found during the investigation, and refused to speculate on the cause of the accident.

Silverado Stages of San Luis Obispo is the company that owned the bus carrying the students.

While it doesn’t appear the bus would have been at fault, CBS2 found Silverado to have a satisfactory rating by federal officials.

The investigation continues.

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