Butte Company Suing Bus Maker After Fatal Crash

February 4, 2011

A Butte, Mont., transportation company is suing the manufacturer of a bus it alleges wasn’t designed to sufficiently protect passengers during a 2007 rollover crash that killed a woman and injured 26 others.

The Montana Standard reports Tucker Transportation and its insurance companies sued Oswego, Kan.-based Diamond Coach Corp. in District Court in Butte.

On Nov. 16, 2007, a Tucker-owned Diamond Coach taking Montana State Prison employees from Butte to Deer Lodge struck a deer and rolled on Interstate 90, killing 54-year-old Sonja L. Ryan.

The suit alleges hitting the deer caused the bumper to jam into the left tire, sending the bus out of control. The lawsuit also alleges a manufacturing defect caused the walls and roof of the bus to “disintegrate” as it rolled.

Diamond Coach officials declined comment.

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