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5 Suffer Minor Injuries In Southeast N.D. Bus Crash

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VALLEY CITY, N.D. (AP) — Five people suffered minor injuries when a passenger bus went off the road in southeastern North Dakota.

The North Dakota Highway Patrol says Stephen D. Arthur, 46, told authorities he was driving the Jefferson Lines bus when the brakes failed while he was trying to exit Interstate 94 at Valley City about 5 a.m. Monday.

Company spokesman Kevin Pursey told The Associated Press that the bus was inspected within the past week and it was doubtful that the brakes failed. The driver might have taken a corner too fast, he said.

The bus was bound from Missoula, Mont., to Minneapolis. Pursey said Arthur had taken control of the bus in Bismarck about 1 ½ hours before the crash, so “there shouldn’t be any fatigue issues.”

The bus went down an embankment but stayed upright, Pursey said. It might have hit a small tree, he said. Valley City police and the state Highway Patrol were investigating.

Five people were taken to a hospital to be treated for minor injuries and were expected to be released later Monday. Jefferson Lines sent a bus from Fargo to pick up the other six passengers and was making arrangements to get the injured passengers to their destination.

The North Dakota Highway Patrol said the damage to the bus totaled $20,000.

About two months ago, 20 passengers on a Jefferson Lines bus escaped uninjured when fire engulfed it near Williston, in northwestern North Dakota. An investigation by Jefferson Lines’ insurance company determined that an accidental engine fire was to blame, Pursey said.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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