CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Stunning new developments after a wheel flew off a CMS bus Tuesday with students on board.
The school district is admitting a CMS mechanic is to blame.
Twenty-six Garinger High School students were boarding Bus 1553 at the time of the incident. One was taken to the hospital as a precaution.
The day after the incident, a spokesperson for CMS is admitting that a mechanic working for the district is to blame.
When we started asking questions, CMS sent us this statement:
It has been determined that the lug nuts on the rear tires on school bus #1553 were not secured properly following a brake replacement. After the brake replacement work was complete, the lug nuts were not tightened to standard using a torque wrench….that resulted in the rear wheels separating from the vehicle during transport.
Buses are supposed to be inspected every 30 days. On Tuesday, we showed you the inspection report we had requested, which indicated the brake repairs were done less than two weeks ago.
In response to what happened, CMS told us:
The CMS transportation team has strengthened guidelines as a result of this incident to ensure that all maintenance technicians follow critical safety requirements in relation to the tire changing and mounting process. The team member who performed the work has been retrained on proper procedure. Additionally, all maintenance technicians will have refresher training on the proper method for changing procedure.
They also told us, “As a result of the accident yesterday, our team has re-checked the buses assigned to the technician to ensure that this was an anomaly and not the norm.”
CMS also said bus drivers are supposed to inspect their buses at the start of their runs and at the end. CMS did not say if the driver of Tuesday's incident did that.