Boston Bus Company Cited By State for Safety Defects In 21 Buses

Want to travel from Boston to New York? Well, you could easily take the train, and ride in comfort on AmTrak. But that would set you back a few hundred dollars.

Or, instead, you could take the $15 Fung Wah bus line, as scores of people have done. A mere $15 from Boston’s Chinatown to New York’s Chinatown? That’s an incredibly low price.

But many people are beginning to learn why that price might be so low. And why, if you did actually take the Fung Wah, you might pay another kind of price, possibly a very serious one. That’s because the Fung Wah bus line has been cited with an inordinately high number of safety violations – so many, that as of today, the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU) has ordered the Fung Wah, stunningly, to remove 21 buses from its fleet of 28. As reported in The Boston Globe today, the Massachusetts DPU actually found cracks in the frames of 21 aging buses operated by Fung Wah. As a result, the DPU has asked the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to shut down the Fung Wah until it fixes and addresses its problems, which were found in state inspections that were held in early February. Inspectors discovered cracks in steering axles, engine cradles and also in motor mounts. Inspection officials have commented that the low-cost bus carrier does not understand basic safety requirements. Officials have also indicated that Fung Wah seems to be unable to maintain its bus fleet properly.

I’m shaking my head in disbelief as I write this, because it’s hard to imagine how a popular bus line like the Fung Wah has been allowed to stay in business, given its track record of accidents and safety violations.

Consider the reported safety violations that this Massachusetts bus line has experienced:

• Last month, one of its buses hit two Manhattan pedestrians.

• In 2007 one of the Fung Wah buses hit a guardrail at the Allston-Brighton, Massachusetts tolls.

• Also during 2007, a driver, who was attempting to change lanes, wedged his bus on top of a concrete barrier at the Weston, Massachusetts toll booths.

• In 2006, a bus heading to Boston rolled over while it got on an interstate ramp, injuring 34 passengers.

• In 2005, a Fung Wah coach caught fire on a Connecticut highway.

• In the past two years, Fung Wah buses have been cited for 159 maintenance violations.

• Since 2011, Fung Wah drivers have received 12 speeding violations.

• Six times, Fung Wah drivers were cited for – are you ready for this? – failure to speak English – and – are you sitting down? – for failing to have a commercial driver’s license.

It’s becoming clear why traveling on the Fung Wah may not be as good a deal as it seems.

Further, the above reported indidents seem to be just the tip of the infraction iceberg with this Boston bus company. To say that the Fung Wah buses have a history of crashes would be the understatement of the year. As a Boston, Mass., bus accident lawyer, I believe that these safety findings about the Fung Wah bus company to be shocking. It is a disgrace that a Massachusetts bus line has been allowed to conduct business under these conditions.

The safety of passengers should always be first and foremost in any transportation company’s mind. Bear in mind – bus accidents can result in horrific injuries.The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration found that, at last count, in 2008, there were 11,000 bus injury crashes, with 24,000 people injured. That’s an astounding statistic.

Perhaps not so surprisingly, as I write this post now (Tuesday evening, February 26 2013,) there are reports in The Boston Globe of a major Massachusetts bus crash that just occurred tonight on Interstate 95, north of Boston near Georgetown.

If you’ve been injured in a Massachusetts bus line accident, including when traveling the popular route from Boston to New York, you will need the expertise of a Massachusetts Turnpike bus accident attorney. Do not suffer in silence. You have every right to file a Massachusetts personal injury lawsuit, to recover damages for your injuries.