The vehicle in the crash underwent regular annual examinations by a federally certified inspector, most recently in 2015 and 2014, and met federal standards, said Amanda Maxwell, spokeswoman for the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission.
At least 16 people had been killed in accidents involving duck boats prior to last week’s tragedy.
“Because of the possibility of continuing safety problems and a current lack of confidence surrounding the company’s operations, we believe it is important to act immediately to protect the public safety”, commission chairman David Danner said.
This particular duck had not had the fix, he said.
Investigators said Saturday that the left front axle of the duck boat was sheared off, but they hadn’t determined if that damage happened before the collision or during it.
Investigators say it will likely take a year to determine the cause of the crash.
Thirteen people remained at Harborview Medical Center on Sunday, with four in intensive care in serious condition. They were among about 45 students and staff from North Seattle College who were on the bus when the tourist-carrying duck boat swerved into it on the Aurora Bridge, a six-lane span with no median barrier.
There will be no rides on Ride the Ducks of Seattle anytime soon.
“The mayor and the governor called for a full inspection of the Ride the Ducks vehicles by the utilities and transportation commission and continued suspension of our operations until they conduct this critical work”, said Ride the Ducks Owner Brian Tracey at a Sunday news conference. “We need to verify that and understand what it means”.
The move Monday follows last week’s deadly crash involving one of the company’s amphibious vehicles. It was refurbished with a General Motors engine and chassis in 2005, Weener said.
The U.S. Army-surplus vehicle that crashed was built in 1945 and refurbished in 2005, Weener said, adding there were about 100 similar trucks in service nationwide.
The company says the service bulletin applied to 57 duck boats, including a few in Seattle; Philadelphia; Stone Mountain Park, Georgia; Branson, Missouri; and Newport, Kentucky.
It was not clear whether the Seattle franchise ever got the message, but the repairs were never made, the NTSB spokesman said. The company had already suspended its tours.