A Ford Motor Co. spokesman confirmed late Friday that the automaker and a Toledo bus body manufacturer have reached an out-of-court settlement with survivors and relatives of victims of a bus crash that killed 27 people near Carrollton, Ky.
However, the No. 2 carmaker and all parties involved in the settlement refused to disclose details, other than to say that Ford and Sheller-Globe Corp., the bus body maker, have agreed to contribute an additional $500,000 to support efforts to reduce drunken driving in America.
"Sheller-Globe Corporation, the bus body manufacturer, and Ford Motor Company, the chassis manufacturer, have reached agreements with virtually all of the 67 families involved in the school bus accident," Ford said in a statement.
Ford, Sheller-Globe and Skeeters & Bennett, the Radcliff, Ky., law firm representing 64 families involved in the bus crash, said only that the confidential settlement amounts made "reasonable provisions toward the needs of the families of the people who died or were injured."
Published reports said Sheller-Globe and Ford, which manufactured the engine and chassis of the 11-year-old school bus, have offered less than $1 million to each of the families of the 24 children who died in the accident. The report also said Ford and Sheller-Globe have offered cash settlements to the estates of three adults and all the survivors.