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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A CMS bus that caught on fire Wednesday passed its most recent inspection in January.

The report shows more than 40 items were checked, wipers and brakes were repaired, but nothing had to be replaced.

The fire started due to an electrical problem in the dashboard, according to fire investigators. Six students were on board as well as the driver. Nobody was injured.

Department of Public Instruction Transportation Services Section Chief Derek Graham says it is possible problems pop up after inspections, or problems can have no symptoms until it's too late.

It's been operating safely, taking kids back and forth to school for a dozen years now, so it's not to my knowledge a bus that's had continual problems or where we would have predicted something was going to go on like that, Graham said.

Graham issued a memo Friday to transportation directors across the state saying the CMS bus fire serves as a reminder that key inspection items must be taken seriously to eliminate potential fire causes.

Examples include paying close attention to wiring connections and grounds in electrical and switch panels next to heater motors.

Also, making sure heater filters aren't clogged and restricting airflow to heater fans.

The memo also mentions previous fires that ignited around the engine from the same make and model bus that caught fire Wednesday.

We are confident that while it was the same make and model of vehicle, that this particular incident was not the same as those incidents, Graham said.

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