The lawsuit, which doesn’t ask for a specific dollar amount, accuses Greyhound Lines of gross negligence and violations of federal safety rules.
A Seattle family is suing Greyhound Lines after one of its buses struck and killed their 25-year-old son, Hunter Brown, while leaving a southern Oregon truck stop this summer.
Brown was a passenger on the overnight trip to California, which left Seattle more than an hour late.
The incident happened around 1:30 a.m. on June 29 after a brief rest break in Central Point, Oregon, near Medford. Witnesses said Brown ran and pounded the side of the departing bus, shouting to be let back aboard, and then tripped into its path, KTVL television reported that day.
The young man’s parents, Paula Becker and Barron Brown, seek a jury trial. They haven’t discussed money damages yet and are more interested in legal discovery — to uncover staffing, training and operating practices, said their lawyer, Charla Aldous, of Dallas, Texas, in a phone interview Tuesday.
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“This lawsuit seeks accountability of this corporation and a change in how it does business to protect our communities and so that other passengers do not have to endure what Hunter suffered,” says the lawsuit filed Tuesday in Dallas, where Greyhound is headquartered.
The complaint accuses the company of gross negligence and violations of federal safety rules. Greyhound’s driver had driven 9½ hours earlier June 28, before even setting out from Seattle, it alleges.
Federal rules say interstate bus and truck operators are allowed driving shifts of up to 10 hours, if they rest at least eight hours between those. They may not drive after working more than 60 hours in any seven-day period. The initial court filing doesn’t document whether rest-period violations occurred.
The driver was “late, fatigued and hostile to the passengers he was supposed to keep safe,” the case alleges. The trip included an altercation that resulted in three teenagers being left at a stop just south of Portland, the case says.
An initial lawsuit filing represents only one side’s version of events. Greyhound has yet to file any rebuttal documents.
Greyhound spokeswoman Lanesha Gipson said “due to pending litigation, we are unable to comment.”
The company says its Greyhound and Bolt buses move 18 million passengers a year between 3,800 destinations in North America.
It has a “satisfactory” rating from federal regulators, ranking above-average in maintenance and below average in meeting driver-rest regulations.
Greyhound-owned buses have been involved in 123 crashes systemwide in the last two years, including those where its drivers aren’t ruled at fault, according to public data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.