BANKSTON, Ala. (WIAT) — A national transportation company is commenting on a crash involving one of their buses that was carrying softball players from Murray State University to a tournament in Tuscaloosa.
Melanie Hinton, a vice president of the American Bus Association, provided a statement to CBS 42 “on behalf” of Miller Transportation, the Louisville-based company that operated the bus.
“Miller Transportation is fully cooperating with the authorities as we work to find the cause of this accident,” the statement said. “Our thoughts are with those who were involved in this accident. Miller places safety at the highest level, which is reflected by the company attaining the highest safety rating with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). As this is an ongoing investigation, we will not be saying anything further.”
The bus carrying Murray State University’s softball team was involved in an accident on Wednesday en route to an NCAA regional tournament being held in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, according to a statement from the school’s athletic department. Three members of the team were hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries, the statement said.
The mother of one of the softball players told CBS 42 that the bus was attempting to pass a logging truck when it struck the vehicle. Logs from the truck pierced a bus window, she said. The mother also said that students on the bus were told not to communicate with the press or share pictures from the scene, which is why CBS 42 has withheld the family’s names.
Location data reviewed by CBS 42 shows that the accident occurred on Highway 13 near Bankston, Alabama, in Fayette County.
Miller Transportation was given a “satisfactory” safety rating by the FMCSA, but its record is not spotless.
In 2016, the federal agency settled an enforcement case against Miller Transportation for $6,240. Records show that the enforcement case related to a violation of rules involving the licensing of truck drivers.
During its 2020 compliance review of Miller Transportation, the FMCSA conducted 34 inspections and found violations in five cases. FMCSA data also shows that the company’s vehicles were involved in seven crashes in the last two years. Only two individuals were injured in those incidents.
CBS 42 has reached out to Murray State athletics for more information about the crash but has not heard back as of Thursday morning.