David Yates Nov. 1, 2013, 1:00pm

The city of Port Arthur’s suit against DaimlerChrysler, which alleges several of the passenger buses they purchased have caught on fire while in operation, has been removed to federal court.

As previously reported, the suit was filed Jan. 15 in Jefferson County District Court.

Court records show that on Feb. 22 a notice of removal was filed in the case, stating that the case had been removed to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Beaumont Division.

The lawsuit alleges that on Dec. 14, 2004, the city approved the purchase of 10 DaimlerChrysler SLF Transit buses for its transit system.

The first incident of a bus catching on fire occurred on Feb. 25, 2010, at the intersection of Bluebonnet Avenue and Vicksburg Avenue.

Other incidents of buses catching on fire include:

  • March 12 at the intersection of Terminal Road and W. 15 Street;

  • And June 12 at the Twin City Wal-Mart parking lot.

The suit accuses DaimlerChrysler of negligently manufacturing defective vehicles and placing them into the stream of commerce.

DaimlerChrysler is further accused of deceptive trade practices and breach of warranty.

The city is suing for the loss of profits it has suffered because of the alleged defective buses.

Provost Umphrey attorney Joe Fisher III of Beaumont represents the city.

DaimlerChrysler is represented by William Book, attorney for the Houston law firm Tekell, Book, Allen & Morris.

Jefferson County case No. E193-822

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