Roberts Hawaii reaches $330K settlement with tour bus drivers

Scene of Roberts crashed in 2006.
Scene of Roberts crashed in 2006.

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A federal judge in Honolulu on Tuesday approved a $330,000 settlement of a class-action lawsuit brought against Roberts Hawaii by dozens of its tour bus drivers.

The plaintiffs had accused the company of forcing them to work long hours without paying the proper overtime.

Claims of driver fatigue were raised after a deadly crash in 2006. A Roberts tour bus crossed the center line of Kamehameha Highway in Kahaluu and crushed an SUV, killing its driver.

The driver of the bus, Steve Oshiro, claimed he was exhausted from working long hours. But prosecutors believed he was under the influence of drugs.

Oshiro is serving up to 20 years in prison for manslaughter.

The attorney for Roberts Hawaii says Tuesday's settlement has nothing to do with that crash.

"Roberts never overworks its drivers," Michael Nauyokas, the company's attorney, said. "We follow all the applicable laws and rules and Department of Transportation regulations. Roberts strives to make sure that its drivers are happy."

He says 83 drivers will receive payments under the settlement.

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