An inquest opened this morning into last fall's bus crash near near the town of St-Joseph-de-la-Rive, Quebec. It will hear from the first people to arrive at the crash site.

The bus was carrying a group of seniors on a Thanksgiving Day outing. It went off the road at the bottom of a steep hill, killing 44 people.

Seven different parties, including the victims' families and the maker of the bus, have asked permission to cross examine witnesses.

When the inquest first met in December, the coroner asked to see recommendations drawn from another inquest into a 1974 earlier crash at the same spot.

The coroner has said it's not his job to lay blame for this latest accident, but he wants to find out what caused it and how future tragedies can be prevented.