The IG said she is accepting the National Transportation Safety Board’s report findings on the crash. The report also found that the Department of Transportation and the Department of Motor Vehicles did not utilize all options available to them to make Prestige Limo comply with laws.
The report did not blame anyone specific at the DOT or DMV, but instead, blamed a lack of policies and procedures that could have prevented the crash.
The IG’s office laid out six recommendations for the DOT and the DMV. It includes:
- The DOT training its staff to take license plates of immobilized and impounded limos;
- Both the DOT and the DMV ensure suspended registrations are not restored without proof that all safety issues have been remedied;
- DOT hearings include a full review of all issues with the limo;
- DMV require its staff to complete a thorough search of entire registration and title history of the limo;
- The DOT must keep copies of incomplete and denied applications; and
- The DOT and DMV must communicate if they suspect any fraud is happening.
You can read the report in full below:
Twenty people were killed when a stretch limousine crashed in Schoharie on October 6, 2018. A trial date has been set for May 1, 2023 for Nauman Hussain, the operator of the limo company involved in the crash. His defense team chose to go to trial after Judge Peter Lynch rejected a plea deal made by a previous judge in September 2021. Hussain would have served five years probation.
Hussain is accused of 20 counts of Criminally Negligent Homicide for not properly maintaining the Ford Excursion limousine. The limo, according to court documents, suffered from “catastrophic brake failure” the day of the crash.
The legacy of the crash reverberated throughout the region and the country. It prompted lawmakers to draft new legislation to reform safety measures in public transportation, private vehicles, and commercial service industry vehicles. These reforms—on the statewide and national level—have included new guidance for inspections and added requirements for wearing seatbelts.