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Transit bus inspected week before deadly Kirkland crash

The Sound Transit bus involved in a deadly crash Monday night on I-405 passed a routine safety inspection one week before accident, the agency reported Thursday.

Sound Transit released a maintenance log showing the bus underwent a test drive May 1 following a complaint the bus pulled to the right when the brakes were applied.

The driver in Monday night’s crashed told State Patrol troopers the brakes failed and he couldn’t stop, crashing into an SUV. Robert and Elizabeth Rotta of Bellevue both died in the crash. Their son, who was driving, was injured.

The mechanic who conducted the inspection wrote it “did not pull, and didn’t pull when braking.” He also reported the break pads were all a quarter-inch thick, above the minimum standard, KING 5 reported.

The State Patrol continues investigating the crash and plans to re-interview all 24 passengers on the bus, The Seattle Times reported. The bus is currently parked in a Bellevue storage yard. The driver remains on paid administrative leave.

Sound Transit said the maintenance log released to media outlets comes with an important caveat:

“Please do not interpret, or convey in any way to your viewers or readers, that our providing this document per your request reflects any conclusion whatsoever on the part of Sound Transit about the cause of this tragic accident. We will rely on the thorough Washington State Patrol investigation.”

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