"Never a Call You Want to Get:" Bus Company CEO on Fatal Orland Crash - NBC Southern California

Coverage of a fiery bus crash involving Southern California students

"Never a Call You Want to Get:" Bus Company CEO on Fatal Orland Crash

Five students and five adults on a trip to a college campus were killed in the northern California crash



    "Never a Call You Want to Get:" Bus Company CEO on Fatal Orland Crash
    A pair of California Highway Patrol Officers looks over the demolished cab of FedEx truck, Friday, April 11, 2014, that crashed into a tour bus on Interstate 5 Thursday in Orland, Calif. At least ten people were killed and dozens injured in the fiery crash between the truck and a bus carrying high school students on a visit to a Northern California College.

    Following a tragic bus crash that killed five students, two drivers and three chaperones on their way from Los Angeles to Humboldt County to vist the state college there, the bus company offered its condolences.

    And in a statement, the company assured its riders that it has a history of providing safe travel across the West.

    "Our thoughts and prayers are with the injured, their families and everyone affected by this accident." reads the statement on the Silverado Stages website. "Our top priority is making sure that the injured are being cared for."

    Bus Company in Deadly Crash Had Good Safety Record

    [LA] Bus Company in Deadly Crash Had Good Safety Record
    The NBC4 I-Team found that Silverado Stages, the bus company involved in Thursday's deadly Northern California crash, has a good safety record. It is one of the largest charter bus companies in California, and the company had two crashes in the last three months. FedEx, however, has been involved in 171 accidents in California -- five of them fatal -- in the last two years.
    (Published Friday, April 11, 2014)

    In addition, CEO Michael Vodarsik spoke publicly, saying that his company goes through the "most extensive actions possible to ensure the safety of our passengers and drivers."

    He added: "This is never a call you want to get."

    Silverado Stages bills itself at the largest private mortorcoach operator in California, which provides charter bus rentals in the Sacramento Valley, the San Francisco Bay Area, the greater Los Angeles area, and the Central Coast.

    In 27 years, U.S. Department of Transportation records show that the company has been involved in just two accidents, and only one of them with injury.

    The California Highway Patrol said on Friday that it will likely take months to figure out just how and why the bus ended up colliding with a FedEx big rig and a white Nissan on Interstate 5 near Orland, Calif. about 5:40 p.m. on Thursday. The FedEx truck was heading south when it crossed the center line and hit the northbound bus head-on, causing the bus to erupt into flames, CHP officials said.

    The group was traveling from Los Angeles to Northern California to tour Humboldt State University.

    FedEx also issued a statement: Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone involved in the tragic accident on I-5 in California. We are cooperating fully with authorities as they investigate.

    Humboldt State University set up a phone number for parents, families and others who need information about their student at (707) 826-6327.The Red Cross in Orland is providing aid and can be reached at (530) 514-9028.