Bus company involved in Stafford crash had warnings from Feds

Published: Mar. 17, 2014 at 11:44 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 27, 2014 at 11:44 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A review of federal safety records reveals several violations against an interstate charter bus company, the same company involved in Monday's crash on I-95 in Stafford County.

Regulators determined there were enough violations for Princess Tours Inc. to be prioritized for federal intervention, according to filings updated three weeks ago.

Virginia State Police said the bus belonged to Princess Tours, a company based out of Indianapolis, Ind. The crash happened around 4 a.m. Monday in the southbound lanes of I-95 between Stafford and Fredericksburg.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration listed three unsafe driving violations against the company, all of them classified as speeding. Before Monday, Princess had no crashes on record.

"I'm deeply sorry for the crash," said a company representative in a phone interview Monday. "We have no information to release because the investigation is ongoing."

The company received two citations for operating busses without periodic inspection, and one violation for an out of date driver's duty status. Princess Tours has six drivers, with more than half a million miles recorded on the road.

State Police Spokeswoman Corinne Geller said the driver involved in Monday's crash, 50-year-old Qilong Xioa of Flushing, N.Y., is now charged with reckless driving. The incident was a single-vehicle crash with speed as a factor, according to investigators.

The bus was en route from New York City to Doraville, a town in suburban Atlanta. Four people had serious injuries, and all 58 passengers went to area hospitals to seek refuge from the winter storm.

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