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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
William Mata

Bus company in deadly New York student band crash repeatedly failed inspections


The company that operated the bus that veered off a New York motorway and rolled 50 feet down a hillside, killing two, had reportedly been deemed an “unacceptable operator” after repeated failed safety inspections.

The bus carrying students from Farmingdale High School on Long Island crashed on 21 September with many passengers injured - although both deaths were adults and all the high schoolers are, according to AP, set to recover.

Regency Transportation operated the bus which rolled down the hillside when travelling in Wawayanda, New York, and was one of six charter buses carrying 300 students to band camp in Pennsylvania.

NBC News reported on Tuesday that Regency had failed five out of 15 safety inspections for the New York State Department of Transportation 2022-23 year and was listed as an  “unacceptable operator”.

CBS said on Tuesday that bus companies can still operate if they are on this list but still face “more scrutiny and more rigorous inspections”. It has been reported that the bus passed two inspections it faced over the summer. The company was put on the list after it failed seven state inspections over the past two years for other buses.

It’s unclear what the issue was with the bus that crashed on Thursday. An investigation is set to be completed by local police.

The two adults who died were band director Gina Pellettiere, 43, of Massapequa, and Beatrice Ferrari, 77, of Farmingdale, a retired teacher who was serving as a chaperone on the trip.

Paul Defendini, superintendent of Farmingdale schools, said: “I know that they appreciate all the well wishes you are sending and we can’t wait to welcome them back when they are ready to return.”

Regency has not responded to requests for comment.

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