The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), which oversees all vehicles in California with capacities greater than 11 people, says that based on a preliminary review of its records, the tour bus that crashed in Union Square Friday after an apparent mechanical failure did not have a permit. The bus had therefore not gotten properly inspected by the California Highway Patrol, though the tour company, City Sightseeing, claims the bus was inspected by the company on October 25, as ABC 7 reports.
Furthermore, as CBS 5 and the Chronicle, the CPUC says that the license plate on the bus doesn't match any of its records, and the bus appears to have been purchased from a New York tour company sometime in the last year. KRON 4 says the license plate actually belonged to a different bus.
Under state law, the company is required to notify the CPUC of any new buses in its fleet within 10 days.
City Sightseeing maintains that they did register the bus with the DMV, and a driver not involved with the accident tells the Chronicle says he wasn't aware of any previous problems with the bus.
As reported yesterday, brake failure appears to be the most likely cause of the accident, and it was the driver himself told his wife was the cause, however this remains under investigation. The driver appears to have swerved into the Apple store construction site in order to avoid further injuries, and indeed he seems to have managed to prevent any serious injuries aboard the bus. However the bus did collide with a cyclist and two pedestrians were hit and became trapped under the bus.
Supervisor Jane Kim, who began over the weekend calling for more local regulatory oversight over these tour companies which have had more than a few concerning incidents in recent years says, "We need to set a high bar for oversight of our tour buses given their size and their frequency and their presence in the busiest parts of our city."
The number of the critically injured appears to have gone down from five to three, per ABC 7, with two others still listed as in serious condition.