Friday, September 25, 2015

Seattle Ride The Ducks Accidentally Head On Rips Open Side of Tour Bus

Seattle Ride The Ducks Accidentally Head On Rips Open Side of Tour Bus --- ===

So far, intentional crash on the part of the Duck driver has apparently been ruled out because nobody has even mentioned the possibility of a terrorist attack. As of Oct 12, the killer duck driver still hasn't been identified or interviewed though a lawsuit has been filed.

5 killed 12 critically injured  Thursday  September 24, 2015 Seattle Ride The Ducks Accidentally Head On Rips Open Side of Tour Bus  For undetermined reasons a Ride the Ducks tour amphibious vehicle crossing the narrow Aurora bridge in Seattle apparently signaled left, driver called "oh no!" and suddenly swerved across the traffic dividing line, and into the side of an oncoming charter bus filled with international students. The driver told authorities that he heard a loud “bang” and his vehicle experienced a mechanical failure at the left front axle assembly, causing him to lose control, and crossed the center line into the oncoming traffic in the southbound lanes The force knocked off the front two tires, the duck's nose completely ripped out the forward left side of the bus, and sent the duck tail spinning backwards. A pickup also hit a SUV head on in the confusion. The Duck lacked an important modification recommended to fix a weakness in the front axle.

It's not the fault of the Duck Tour. It's not the fault of the Aurora Bridge. It's not the fault of the driver also being the tour guide. It looks like the driver for some reason signaled for a left lane change, itself a dangerous and unnecessary maneuver on the narrow bridge, and then steer into the oncoming bus for unknown reasons. From what we know, it's the fault of an axle that was not fixed. Nothing wrong with the condition of the driver. Media and internet social media are pointing to every possible. With the axle, we can exclude that  the driver may have aimed for the bus and hit his target for reasons and agenda unknown since there is nobody out there that would deliberately want to harm innocent college student on the highway. Suddenly swerving in the direction of an oncoming bus would explain why the front axles would suddenly shear.

Other cases consider

  • Germanwings pilot - good plane and good pilot fly into a mountain for unknown reason, later determined to be murder suicide.
  • Amtrack Philadelphia good train and good engineer manually speeds up to 100 instead of slowing down into the curve. Investigators immediately announce they can only investigate mechanical or accidental failure because a deliberate action on the part of the driver would require a criminal investigation. Engineer in Philadelphia Amtrak Crash Is Charged With Involuntary Manslaughter New York Times May 12, 2017 - Brandon Bostian was charged exactly two years after the crash, which ... The Amtrak engineer who was driving a train that derailed in 2015 in ...[what if it was deliberate?]
  • 3/30/2017 crash: head-on erractic pickup drives into church bus killed: 13 Texas church bus crash: Callers reported swerving pickup before collision, police say
  • March 1, 2017 crash: head-on into school bus injured: 6 fishy head-on collision involving school bus just after another hit and run crash Atlanta Journal Constitution Six people, including two children, have been taken to the hospital after a car crashed head on into a school bus Wednesday afternoon, Cobb County ... driver had just left a hit-and-run accident when she collided with the bus. Two children were among the six injured. Car driver was already in trouble for hit and run crash just before hitting the school bus.
  • Stockton California : Wrong Way FedEx Truck Hits School Charter Bus With College Tour High School Students April 10, 2014 California FedEx Truck Hits School Charter Bus In Orland, north of Sacramento California, FedEx semi-trailer truck on Interstate 5 for unknown reasons swerves across the freeway median, steers to avoid a car and rams directly into an oncoming charter bus. There is no evidence of braking or any problems with the truck. No cause for the crash was ever determined, and deliberate crash was never even considered or dismissed as a possible motive.
  • Seattle Bus in 1998 Carrying 31 People Plunges From Aurora Bridge After Driver Is Shot by Terrorist; 2 Are Dead Published: November 27, 1998 SEATTLE  A city bus carrying 31 people plunged off a bridge here and plowed through the outer edge of an apartment roof this afternoon after the driver was shot by a passenger. The driver, and a person suspected of shooting the driver, were both killed, the police said. The 29 others were injured. The two-section bus was just starting to cross Aurora Avenue Bridge, which spans the Lake Union ship canal, about 3:10 P.M. when the driver was shot by a passenger, the police said. The bus, heading south, jumped a lane of northbound traffic, hit a van, then crashed through a guardrail and fell 50 feet, landing upright in an apartment garden in the Fremont district, an area of residential buildings, restaurants and businesses. Police officers did not disclose a motive for the shooting.
  • September 27, 2015 (following sunday) Another head-on crash Sunday morning on Aurora Bridge as driver claims he fell asleep The Seattle Times Sunday morning about 6:30 a.m. northbound vehicle on the bridge crossed over the center line and collided with one traveling southbound. The driver told police investigating the accident that he fell asleep. Aurora Bridge sees second crash in less than a week KOMO‑TV There are no serious injuries after a head-on crash between two cars took place on the Aurora Bridge Sunday morning, the Seattle Police ..
  • Crash closes Seattle's Aurora Bridge in both directions | The ... The Seattle Times Feb 21, 2013 - Crash closes Seattle's Aurora Bridge in both directions ... crash involved a white box truck, a Honda Pilot and a purple, Ford pickup. The accident looks like a head-on collision
  • Teens allegedly deliberately crash stolen unmarked police car head-on into bus in Melbourne's east ABC Online October 16, 2015 Two teenagers have been taken to hospital with serious injuries after allegedly crashing a ...If teens were driving a stolen car, they probably deliberately steered head-on into a bus, it was not an accident. 
  • Asian Victims many students from Asia
  • Aurora bridge has narrow lanes, said to be dangerous
  • Drivers not interviewed as of sunday. Ride The Ducks CEO Brian Tracey said the driver is a two-year veteran and was injured and being treated at the hospital. Seattle Police said a preliminary evaluation of the driver for signs of intoxication did not find any evidence of impairment.
  • Fluid:  said the red fluid found splattered on the inside of the Duck’s wheel well likely came from the transmission, but investigators haven’t reached a final determination on that.
  • Front axle The axles, including the front drive axle are ancient. It looks like the left outer end that has a CV(constant velocity) joint failed. No surprise after 70 years. These vehicles no longer need front drive axles.
  • Mass Casualty Events
  • Pickup  There was a secondary collision between an SUV and pickup that couldn't stop in time.  You can see them in the aerial shots.
  • Red Red fluid, likely from the transmission, was spattered in the left front wheel
  • Sheared axle: investigators haven’t determined what caused the axle to break or concluded that it was a cause of the crash. But the findings match witness reports that the Duck appeared to have a mechanical problem with a wheel shortly before it fishtailed and careened across the bridge’s centerline, hitting a charter bus.
  • signal left lane change - dangerous, no need to lane change unless cover story to swerve into bus 
  • NTSB The Aurora Bridge accident is the board’s first investigation involving an amphibious vehicle on land.
  • NTSB to examine Duck vehicle's sheared axle, wheel | The ... said the red fluid found splattered on the inside of the Duck's wheel well
  • swerve - might be powerful enough to weaken front axles so that they break on impact
  • tires - 2 fell off, seen one in front of bus, one between duck and bus
  • Victim: 5 killed in the Aurora Bridge collision include a 49-year-old woman from Austria, an 18-year-old man from Indonesia, a 36-year-old woman from Japan and a 17-year-old girl from China. seattle times  identified fifth victim on Monday. 20 year-old Haram Kim of South Korea died at Harborview Sunday  17-year-old Runjie Song China, 37-year-old Mami Sato Japan, 49-year-old Claudia Derschmidt Austria and 18-year-old Ivan Putradanto Indonesia
  • witness could be planted to say wheel fell off first
  • Wrong Way Driver Head-On Accident or Murder 


*Duck Incidents

Ride the Ducks (Wikipedia)

Fatal incidents[edit]

In 1999 a DUKW sank in Hot Springs, Arkansas, killing 13 of the 20 people on board.[9] 11 Are Killed as a Tourist Boat Sinks on Arkansas Lake May 2, 1999 HOT SPRINGS, Ark., May 1— Eleven people drowned and one was injured today when the amphibious excursion boat on which they were passengers sank without warning in nearby Lake Hamilton. The dead included three children, ages 2 to 5, said Sheriff Larry Selig of Garland County. The driver survived. The 20 people aboard the open-air, World War II-vintage boat panicked and scrambled for life preservers as it took on water at midday and sank suddenly on Lake Hamilton near this popular tourist town

On June 23, 2002, the Lady Duck, a custom-built vehicle converted from a Ford F-350 pickup truck, sank while a cruise on the Ottawa River in Ontario, Canada. Six passengers, the driver, and the tour guide escaped, but four passengers were trapped under the sunken vehicle's canopy and drowned.[10]A review found problems with regulating such vehicles and defects in the makeshift design and the emergency procedures.

On July 7, 2010, a regulated and modern Ride the Ducks amphibious bus (based on the original design), was disabled by an engine fire and later run over by a barge on the Delaware River in Philadelphia. The operator of the tug pushing the barge was on his personal cell phone. Before the accident the Ride The Ducks captain made numerous calls to the tug to get the tug to change course. Those calls were heard and rebroadcast by other vessels, but there was no response from the operator of the tug.[11] Thirty-three passengers and two crew members were quickly recovered, but two passengers, a 20-year-old man and a 16-year-old girl, both part of a tour group from Hungary, were killed. The NTSB determined that the probable cause of the accident was the Tugboat mate's (responsible for driving the tug at the time) inattention to his duties. The tugboat mate was sentenced to 366 days in federal prison.

On May 8, 2015, a Ride the Ducks boat struck and killed a woman crossing the street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania's Chinatown section. The incident is still being investigated.[9]

On September 24, 2015, a Ride the Ducks vehicle in Seattle, Washington crashed into a charter bus on the Aurora Bridge, killing five passengers on the bus, critically injuring eight, and seriously injuring eight more.[12]


In 2010 a bearing collapsed on a DUKW belonging to The Yellow Duckmarine which resulted in four passengers, including an 80-year old person, being taken to hospital with injuries.[13]

On 11 October 2011 a motorcyclist was critically injured after a Seattle 'Ride The Ducks' vehicle hit and dragged him at a red light.[14] Ride The Ducks has been involved in two other collisions in recent years, in December 2010 and June 2011, when different Duck drivers rear-ended passenger vehicles at Third Avenue and Pike Street and at Aurora Avenue North and Denny Way. No one was injured, but both Duck drivers told officers they didn’t see the cars because of the height of their own vehicles, according to the collision reports.[15]

On 30 March 2013 a duck boat of The Yellow Duckmarine in Liverpool sank in the city's Salthouse Dock during a tour. All passengers were safely transferred to a pontoon before the vehicle began to sink.[16] In June 2013 another duck boat, operated by the same company, sank in the Albert Dock as it came to the end of a tour of Liverpool. Passengers were forced to jump into the water as the vehicle rapidly took on water. Some were rescued by vessels while others swam to the side of the dock. Out of the 31 people on board, 27 were treated in hospital for minor injuries.[17][18] The incident resulted in the Maritime and Coastguard Agencywithdrawing all safety certificates for the craft owned by Pearlwild and their entering administration. Pearlwild are also under investigation by the North West Traffic Commissioner over the operation of the Duckmarines during 2012.[19]

On 29 September 2013 a duck boat on the River Thames in London caught fire. Thirty people were rescued, a number of them after having jumped into the River Thames to escape the fire.[20]


"a faulty axle was the problem, not distracted driving."
Tour businesses plead with Seattle council not to pass 'harmful' bill against driving and narrating tour
BY RICHARD D. OXLEY, Writer | March 23, 2016
Seattle businesses argue a bill to address distracted driving is ineffective.... places a prohibition on any tour driver from narrating a tour while the vehicle is in motion....Seattle's tourism industry call the bill a "knee-jerk reaction" that is well-intentioned, but misguided. They argue it places unnecessary regulations on an entire industry in response to an unrelated issue — a faulty axle was the problem, not distracted driving.  ...

Sept 24, 2015
NTSB's preliminary report on the Ride the Ducks...
... operated by Ride The Ducks ... The left front axle assembly that failed on the accident vehicle had an earlier modification to ... NTSB investigators ...
Preliminary Report - Highway - HWY15MH011

Executive Summary

The information in this report is preliminary and will be supplemented or corrected during the course of the investigation.
About 11:11 a.m. local time on Thursday, September 24, 2015, a 2009 MCI motorcoach, operated by CWA Inc. DBA Bellair Charters Hesselgrave South, was traveling southbound in the center lane on the Washington State Route 99 (SR99) Aurora Bridge (official name: George Washington Bridge). The motorcoach was occupied by a 68-year-old driver and 50 passengers. At the same time, a 1945 DUKWan amphibious military vehicle modified for tour operations, operated by Ride The Ducks Seattle LLC, and occupied by a 54-year-old driver and 36 passengerswas traveling northbound in the center lane on the SR99 Aurora Bridge. As the two vehicles approached each other, the DUKW driver reported hearing a loud “bang” as his vehicle experienced a mechanical failure at the left front axle assembly, causing him to lose control. The DUKW vehicle crossed the center line into the oncoming traffic in the southbound lanes. The front of the DUKW struck the left side of the motorcoach near the driver’s compartment. The DUKW vehicle then penetrated into the left side passenger compartment of the motorcoach, damaging the interior floor and occupied seats. During the impact, the DUKW rolled toward its left side and a number of passengers were ejected before the vehicle came to rest back on its wheels.
A 2011 Dodge Ram pickup truck was also traveling southbound adjacent to the motorcoach. In an attempt to avoid the collision, the Dodge pickup truck moved left into the northbound lane and subsequently struck the right side of the DUKW. The Dodge pickup truck continued forward, striking a 2006 Toyota Highlander sport utility vehicle, which had been traveling in the northbound left lane behind the DUKW and had struck the left side of the DUKW. A 2007 Toyota Tundra pickup truck, also traveling in the northbound lane, struck the left front of the Dodge pickup truck.
As a result of this crash, five occupants of the motorcoach died. Sixty-two occupants of the motorcoach, the DUKW, and the crash-involved passenger vehicles reported injuries ranging from minor to serious.
An axle housing modification described in an October 2013 notice issued by Ride The Ducks International, which refurbishes and modifies DUKW amphibious vehicles into passenger-carrying tour vehicles for commercial use, is being reviewed as part of the investigation. The stated purpose of the notice was to alert owners and provide guidance on a modification to strengthen the DUKW axle housing to prevent fractures. The left front axle assembly that failed on the accident vehicle had an earlier modification to the axle housing that had been recommended by Ride The Ducks International but did not have an associated service bulletin.
NTSB investigators documented the damage to the crash scene, the DUKW vehicle, and the motorcoach using three-dimensional (3D) laser scanning technology. Figures 1 and 2 show the 3D scans of the left front side of the DUKW vehicle and the left side of the motorcoach, respectively.
Figure 1:  Linked 3D laser scans depicting frontal damage on the accident DUKW vehicle. 
  Figure 1:  Linked 3D laser scans depicting frontal damage on the accident DUKW vehicle.

Figure 2:  Linked 3D laser scans depicting the damaged left side of the motorcoach.
Metallurgical examination of the axle components, review of the motorcoach company’s onboard video systems, and review of the regulations for amphibious vehicles used for passenger transportation are ongoing. Additionally, investigators continue to interview passengers and pertinent witnesses, and gather factual information on the bridge characteristics, motor carrier operations, and toxicology testing.
 ​The information in this report is preliminary and will be supplemented or corrected during the course of the investigation.

Probable Cause

​The probable cause will be determined at the completion of the investigation.

Legal Perspective On the Ride The Ducks Disaster...
Legal Perspective On the Ride The Ducks Disaster On The ... vehicle is found to be at fault for ... front driver wheel has come off and this was not the side ...We must wait for the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)’s final investigation report.

Information is coming out now that there was a recommendation the front axles shafts be replaced over tow years ago. None of Ducks in this fleet was repaired. If you notice the front driver wheel has come off and this was not the side that impacted the bus. The NTSB says it can take over a year but with the failed parts in hand it shouldn't take that long.Being in and out of the water constantly will cause premature failure on any Item that requires lubrication .Water wears away the grease and you have bearings that fail and then things fall off. It's really not that hard to figure out.
December 28, 2015 KIRO Ride the Ducks testing vehicles on Seattle streets  Ride the Ducks are testing vehicles on Seattle streets this week, according to the firm that represents the tour company. ... an unsatisfactory safety rating for the company, based on one acute and six critical violations following the overall review of operations. They said one driver drove 11 times without a valid commercial driver's license and the company didn't do enough random drug tests.

(They still haven't identified talked to the killer duck driver??)

Oct 10 NTSB: Duck boat in Seattle crash didn't have recommended ...KPTV A Seattle duck boat that swerved wildly into an oncoming charter bus last week, ... They expect to interview the drivers of the charter bus and the duck this week.

Oct 9 Ride the Ducks crash: Captains' roles are like texting while ... The Seattle Times3 days ago - Duck captains/drivers are expected to operate the vehicle. They are also expected to entertain the ... 

Oct 5 Survivor of Ride the Ducks crash in Seattle sues - Orange ... Orange County Register - It names both Ride the Ducks of Seattle and Ride the Ducks International of Atlanta ... Yoon sustained in the crash, and the Duck vehicle's still unidentifieddriver. Oct 5 Korean student sues over Ducks crash | The Seattle Times The Seattle Times ames both Ride the Ducks of Seattle and Ride the Ducks International of Atlanta ... for injuries Yoon suffered, as well as the vehicle's still-unidentified driver. Oct 5 Student injured in Seattle bus crash sues duck boat operator ... Star Tribune  Ride the Ducks International should have warned the Seattle franchise about

Sept 28

Seattle duck boat operator suspended after deadly crash ...CNN A Washington state agency suspends Ride the Ducks of Seattle while its fleet is inspected and the investigation into last week's deadly crash continues.
Sept 27

NTSB: Duck Boat Involved in Fatal Accident had Sheared ... KTXL  NTSB: Duck Boat Involved in Fatal Accident had Sheared Axle ... at Harborview Medical Center, a nursing supervisor who didn't identify herself said. ... The drivers of each vehicle have not been interviewed yet, he said.
5th crash victim dies; NTSB says Duck did not receive ...
The Seattle Times  NTSB investigators say the Duck vehicle involved in Thursday's deadly ... The Duck involved in the crash, identified by the Coast Guard as Duck No. ... They plan this week to interview the drivers of the Duck and the charter ...20-year-old woman died on Sunday of injuries suffered in Thursday’s crash on the Aurora Bridge, the fifth death from the collision between a Ride the Ducks tour vehicle and a charter bus. The woman, identified as a student at North Seattle College, died on Sunday at Harborview Medical Center, a spokeswoman for the hospital said. All five victims were students attending the college. 

Also on Sunday, a federal investigator said the Duck vehicle involved in the crash didn’t receive a safety fix recommended by the company that refurbishes the amphibious tour vehicles. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) member Earl Weener on Sunday said Ride the Ducks International, headquartered in Atlanta, found a potentially dangerous failure point in the amphibious World War II-era vehicles’ axle housing in 2013 and recommended a fix in a notice to companies that use them.

Duck No. 6, was built in 1945 and last refurbished in 2005, the NTSB’s Weener said. Weener on Saturday had said the vehicle’s left-front axle was “sheared off” in the crash. 

NTSB hadn’t determined what caused the axle failure or whether it occurred before the collision. But the failure seems to line up with witness reports that the Duck swerved and appeared to have a mechanical problem just before the accident.

comments: WHY will it take up to a year to investigate the accident?  They know enough to say that it was very likely an axle problem.  It won't take that long to interview everyone.  It won't take that long to go over the physical evidence (which they apparently have already).  The bus didn't cause the accident.  It won't take that long to determine whether the Seattle Ducks company actually received notice of the need for repair, and whether they did the repair.  Why a year?/  We cannot rule out criminal culpability of the Duck driver or of company owners and managers for at least negligent homicide./  OMG are you serious? Why are you so quick to want to put somebody in jail for this? Accidents happen. It's like. Just because something bad happens doesn't mean another life has to be ruined. Stuff happens. Accidents happen all the time.

Sept 25

Seattle Bus Crash Is Probed by Federal Officials - WSJ
The Wall Street Journal  Ride the Ducks vehicle collided with a charter bus on a city bridge, ... bus across opposing lanes, after suffering an apparent wheel problem.

Victims identified in Aurora Bridge crash - b Ride The Ducks CEO Brian Tracey said the driver is a two-year veteran...

Sept 24

Victims, witnesses describe horrific crash: 'All the sudden we ...
KCPQ4 days ago - Below is a Seattle Times video interview with Tim Gesner, 61, of Orlando,... A witness to the crash driving behind the duck said he noticed the ... Victims in Aurora Bridge crash identified; NTSB says probe could take a year.

4 dead, 2 critically injured in collision between Ride the Ducks vehicle, charter bus on Aurora Bridge
The Seattle Times‎ -... a collision between a Ride the Ducks tour vehicle and a charter bus on the Aurora Bridge. ... The college has about 900 international students, many from Asia, out of a total ...

Victims identified in Aurora Bridge crash‎

Duck vehicle crash survivor: I heard the driver say, 'Oh, no'
USA TODAY‎ - 1 hour ago

More news for ride the ducks aurora bridge crash foreign

Victims identified in Aurora Bridge crash -
KING‑TV  Four international students from North Seattle College were killed Thursday. ... A collision between a bus and a Ride The Ducks tour bus on the ...

4 international students killed in bus, 'Ride the Ducks ...
KCPQ  4 international students killed in bus, 'Ride the Ducks' vehicle crash ...Aurora Bridge then reopened for the first time since the accident.

4 dead as bus, duck tour vehicle collide in Seattle -
CNN  Four people were killed when a tour bus and a duck boat tourist vehicle collided ... Seattle (CNN) At least four international college students were killed when a... A nurse who was walking along the bridge when the crash occurred said ... Seattle police tweeted that Aurora Bridge between downtown Seattle ...

Duck rider heard 'Oh, no!' before Aurora Bridge crash that ...
The Seattle TimesFour people, all international students at North Seattle College, died and 12 were seriously injured in a collision between a Ride the Ducks tour ...

Investigators begin probe of deadly Aurora Bridge crash ...
The Seattle Times
 Investigators begin probe of deadly Aurora Bridge crash ... Police officers and others watch as a Ride the Ducks vehicle is loaded onto a tow ... internationalprogram during an orientation trip when the collision occurred just ...

Ride the Ducks boat, bus collide on Aurora Bridge killing 4 ...
Seattle Post‑Intelligencer
Ride the Ducks boat, bus collide on Aurora Bridge killing 4, injuring ..... in a fatal crash with a charter passenger bus earlier in the day in Seattle.

4 dead, dozens injured after Ride the Ducks vehicle, bus crash
KIRO‑TV A Ride the Ducks tour vehicle and a charter bus carrying foreign college students collided on the busy Aurora bridge Thursday, killing four ...

'Duck' vehicle, bus collide on Aurora Bridge - KOMO News
KOMO‑TV Four people were killed and 51 injured when a "Ride the Ducks" ... bus full of international college students Thursday on the Aurora Bridge, officials said. ... All lanes of the bridge were closed by the crash and are expected to ...

Four killed in crash of bus, Duck vehicle - USA Today USA Today The charter bus and amphibious Ride the Ducks vehicle collided on a ...A motorist on the Aurora Bridge in Seattle describes what he saw when a duck ...foreign-exchange students and a Ride The Ducks amphibious tour ...