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Tranzit managing director confident no Mitsubishi link in bus crashes

Tranzit Coachline managing director Peter Snelgrove said while the cause of the crash near Inglewood was not yet confirmed, he was sure all of Tranzit's buses were safe. - Photo: RNZ / Richard Tindiller

The managing director of the bus company that owned the vehicle involved in Wednesday's crash near Inglewood, does not believe an investigation will find a problem with Mitsubishi buses.

A 69-year-old man died following the accident in Taranaki, which was carrying students from Inglewood High School at the time.

Yesterday the Transport Minister, Phil Twyford, announced the Ministry of Transport and the NZ Transport Agency will investigate three recent bus crashes, all involving Mitsubishi Fusos.

The three crashes in Rangitikei, Mt Ruapehu and central Taranaki, killed two people and injured several others and all took place within a fortnight.

Tranzit Coachline managing director Peter Snelgrove said while the buses are all Fusos, the bus involved in Taranaki was a larger MP model.

"Once the Serious Crash Unit, the CVIU (Commercial Vehicle Enforcement) inspect all the vehicles, it won't be a Mitsubishi problem," he said.

Mr Snelgrove said while the cause of the crash was not yet confirmed, he was sure all of Tranzit's buses were safe.

"We're 100 percent confident in our fleet maintenance, we have a stringent maintenance programme.

"We knew within minutes of the accident, [because] all the vehicles are electronically GPS monitored so we know the speed, the direction, what happened, except what the driver was doing, we know everything else," he said.

He said an investigation was still underway, but the data they had received from the vehicle showed no sign of speeding at the time of the crash.

When asked for comment on the investigation, NZTA said it could not speculate on what could have contributed to any of the crashes, while police investigations were still underway.

"Any issues which arise from these investigations will be addressed by the Ministry of Transport and the NZ Transport Agency, and reported back to the Minister of Transport.

"The Minister has made it clear that the facts related to these three crashes must be established before talking about any response," said the statement.


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