Two months after twin bus infernos, Volvo report not ready

Two months after twin bus infernos, Volvo report not ready

Nearly two months after the two back-to-back fire accidents involving Volvo buses that claimed 52 lives, the global manufacturer of the luxury multi-axle buses is yet to come out with its own investigation report, citing possible reasons for the fire.

Two Volvo buses belonging to private transport operators from Bangalore caught fire on October 30 and November 14 last year, after hitting a culvert and a median, respectively. After the two accidents, Volvo had flown in two teams of experts from Sweden, which visited the crash sites for conducting their investigation. However, Volvo is yet to come out with its report on whether the cause of the fire was internal or something else led to the fire in the two cases.

The accidents had raised several doubts about the safety aspects of Volvo buses, the location of fuel tanks as well as the location of the battery of the bus.

It had left everyone baffled as to how a multi-axle bus could catch fire after hitting a culvert or a median. In fact, the State Transport department’s probe report had stated that the cause of the fire in the bus was internal.

As the KSRTC and BMTC have the maximum number of Volvo buses in their fleet, Volvo was to share its investigation report with the two as well as the Transport department. However, till date, the bus manufacturer has not shared the probe details with either the Transport department or KSRTC/BMTC.

A senior official from the Transport department said, “We have not been given any report by the Volvo. We did ask the officials about their investigation during a recent visit to their plant and we were told that the report is being finalised. So far, nothing has come to us.”

‘No report’

KSRTC Managing Director M Manjunath Prasad said, “We have not got any report from Volvo, although the officials of Volvo had told us that their investigation is in the final stages and that they will share the report with us soon.”

KSRTC has 419 Volvo buses and plans to procure more. But for now, both KSRTC and BMTC have put on hold any move to purchase Volvo buses.

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