Crashed Charter Bus Used Illegal Tire: NTSB

Fifteen people were confirmed dead in the crash Friday morning of a charter bus near Sherman, Texas, a city north of Texas near the Texas-Oklahoma border. Federal authorities from the National Transportation Safety Board said the bus was being operated illegally, and the retreaded tire on the right front wheel was not allowed because retreads cannot be used on the axle that controls steering, according to Associated Press and Texas newspapers' reports today.

Angel Tours Inc. of Houston apparently was the operating the bus, although today's reports said a second company at the same address might have been the operator. Both companies should not be operating interstate charter buses because Angel's interstate authority was suspended in June after safety violations were found in an inspection and the other company, Iguala BusMex Inc., had not yet been approved for interstate operation, according to the reports.

The victims were among a group of Vietnamese-American Catholics traveling to Carthage, Mo. to take part in a religious festival. The bus crashed through a guardrail after the retreaded tire blew and slid off the highway on its side. 

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