Owner waits for news on school bus fire’s cause
PETER West will have to wait months for the final report into what caused his nearly new bus to burst into flames after 61 high schools students were evacuated.
Four teachers were also on the National Coaches bus transporting Maroochydore High students from the University of the Sunshine Coast back to their classroom on July 22.
The driver has been praised for detecting smoke in the engine bay and evacuating the students and staff safely before the blaze took hold.
Both Mr West and his son, Paul, believe changes to the way engines work to reduce emissions are behind the cause of the blaze.
"It's one of many in the state," Mr West said.
Bus Industry Confederation executive director Michael Apps was still waiting for a nationwide report in the causes of the alarming number of bus fires to be finalised.
Mr Apps said there "60 fires of which 30 could be classified minor and others serious" in the last few years.
New South Wales alone had 28 fires on a bus in 2013.
A Transport and Main Roads spokeswoman said in the last five years there had been five incidents of bus fires reported in Queensland.
"While we are not aware of a noticeable increase in the number of bus fires, the safety of passengers is our highest priority which is why we contributed $25,000 to a national investigation into bus fires," the spokeswoman said.