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Old 05-21-2010, 11:29 AM   #1
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School bus burned up due to brake failure

The news last night showed a school bus burning up in the Los Angeles area with 23 children on board. They stated it caught on fire due to brake failure. They got all the kids off unharmed but the bus is a total loss.
I am wondering if there is a workhorse chassis under that school bus?
I read in this forum from time to time that the buses and commercial trucks with workhorse chassis never have a problem.
I am wondering.
Can anyone in the LA area check this out and let us know?
thanks,
Bebop
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Old 05-21-2010, 11:40 AM   #2
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Bluebird bus? On line articles I read did not specify a cause of the fire other than it 'started in front'. This looks to be a rear engine model.

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Old 05-21-2010, 12:08 PM   #3
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ABC NEWS last night specifically stated it started due to brake lock up.
That does sound familiar so thought I would post a thread here and see what others know about it.
Bill
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Old 05-21-2010, 02:25 PM   #4
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I do not know of any School Busses built on Workhorse Chassis but.. That simply means I do not know.. It don't mean they don't build 'em.

Now, I do know brake lockups can occur for a number of reasons. I have expierenced both total brake failure (For 3 reasons) and brake lock up (For one reason) none of which have anything to do with the Workhorse brake issue.. and I might add NONE of them on my Workhorse

One was GM

One was a Chrysler

And the other was... Assorted cars... Only one resulted in an accident (The Chrysler one and that was not Chrysler's fault, after market replacement part failed) ... Only that one and the brake lockup resulted in a tow-truck call
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Old 05-21-2010, 03:24 PM   #5
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Being that these school bus's are DP I would think they would have a larger caliper then the 66m on them. Also knowing that California and the city of LA are broke I would suspect this bus is a 1990's model at best. Was Bosch building this caliper in the 80's or 90's?
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Old 05-21-2010, 06:11 PM   #6
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This vehicle is a front engined something and I do not see where it is an RDP like a Thomas School bus which this vehicle isn't. The screen in front of the vehicle is a radiator intake. There is a box immediately visible in the pictures right behind the windscreen which attests to this.

There does not appear to be enough floorspace given the shot we've seen of the emergency door open to accommodate a diesel engine. I have not seen any openings in the back of the vehicle for a condenser or radiator in any of the pictures or videos that I have seen.

The tires on this bus are very large perhaps 255 80R 22.5s (or larger). Look at the bolt pattern. This vehicle is not a Workhorse commercial chassis and I can't recognize what type of bus it is.

Although it was stated that there was a brake problem, it is inconceivable that a vehicle of this type regardless of what types of brakes this vehicle had would combust in this manner and burn out the vehicle. In order to get this type of heat in this situation a fuel was involved and I expect that is where the investigators will focus their attention. I also have not seen where the wheels or tires were on fire as well.

The driver reported that the brakes locked up. What is evident in this statement is that there existed a fire in the engine compartment which compromised electrical wiring and this most likely set the parking brake in a similar manner in which we would see a fried ignition switch on a P Series lock up the auto apply brake. This I expect is why this vehicle stopped in the middle lanes of the Interstate.
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Old 05-21-2010, 09:17 PM   #7
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thank you Driver for your insight into my question.
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Old 05-22-2010, 08:55 PM   #8
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You are assuming disk brakes, they are most likely air, and a fire melted an air line causing loss of air which would set the spring brake.
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Old 05-26-2010, 12:59 PM   #9
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I love it!! P30's that lock up the drive line in the middle of traffic! Now that's what we've been complaining about all along, DriVer!!
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Old 05-26-2010, 08:32 PM   #10
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I love it!! P30's that lock up the drive line in the middle of traffic! Now that's what we've been complaining about all along, DriVer!!
"I hear that", Wouldn't it be nice to be a Ford owner and just get entertained by reading about Workhorse owners brake, autopark, IP, burnt wires and other weird electrical problems and a mfgr that really doesn't care about repeat customers or their reputation? If they won't fix the brakes, they certainly don't care about any thing else.
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:28 AM   #11
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Many school buses of that style have front engine diesels. That would permit the rear emergency door. The emergency doors are on the sides with the pusher styles. Air brakes have been required on school buses for many years, on larger buses, which that is.
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Old 05-27-2010, 10:00 AM   #12
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Look at the pix close, the rear door is open. The open panel in front is where the fuse box is and large 12V relays. And power steering fluid res. Also some models have plastic air line there. A fire in that area would melt the air lines and cause an air loose. It also looks like a private owned bus, chrome wheels. Tires are most likely 11X22.5 and if the fire started at a tire, the tire would b flat. It looks like it is a Blue Bird due to the flat front top. Just my take as a school bus trainer.
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Old 05-27-2010, 11:28 AM   #13
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Look at the pix close, the rear door is open. ... Just my take as a school bus trainer.
Bigdaddy, Thank you for your input.
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Old 05-27-2010, 11:31 AM   #14
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"I hear that", Wouldn't it be nice to be a Ford owner and just get entertained by reading about Workhorse owners brake, autopark, IP, burnt wires and other weird electrical problems and a mfgr that really doesn't care about repeat customers or their reputation? If they won't fix the brakes, they certainly don't care about any thing else.
It is entertaining.

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