After an accident that killed eight students and one instructor and wounded two others, Utah State University has temporarily grounded its fleet of 50 15-passenger vans for safety inspections, the Standard-Examiner
of Utah reported.
The 1994 Dodge Ram van, carrying members of the school’s agricultural club, was returning to campus when it apparently it blew a tire and rolled four times, ejecting all 11 passengers.
Passenger vans have been under scrutiny from the government recently. A total of 15 passenger vans of all makes have been issued several federal safety warnings, citing a number of rollovers and passenger deaths, according to the report.
The school is also reviewing its operation policies. The current policies were set in place after a USU accident in 2001. That accident involved the rollover of a 15-passenger van, as well, injuring six members of the USU men’s volleyball club.
The 2001 accident, along with several from around the country, prompted the first federal safety warnings regarding the vans.