As one of the largest vehicles on the road, buses can cause considerable damage to other vehicles and their passengers if they’re involved in a car collision. Bus passengers can also be seriously hurt in a bus accident, whether it involves other vehicles or just the bus, such as in a rollover.
Public transportation is a great way for anyone to get around, from school children to the elderly, and riding a bus shouldn’t be a risk. But a bus that’s poorly maintained or a driver who isn’t qualified to drive a bus or isn’t paying attention to the road can lead to a life-changing wreck for many people.
If the unthinkable happens, and you are involved in a bus crash, a bus accident attorney can help protect your legal rights to seek compensation for your injuries.
The Most Common Kinds of Bus Accidents
Experienced bus accident attorneys know that an accident involving a bus can happen in many situations, and the resulting injuries depend on the type of crash, such as:
- Head-on collision
- Left or right turning accident
- Rear end collision
- Merging or a wide-turn accident
- Failure to yield or follow road signals and signs
- Accidents due to traveling at unsafe speeds
- Bicycle or pedestrian accidents
Bus construction makes them more vulnerable to accidents. They have a higher center of gravity and larger blind spots than passenger vehicles. Additionally, they require wider berths to turn and extra room to slow down, which means cutting off a bus in traffic can be very dangerous.
A bus accident lawyer can represent you no matter what kind of bus accident you’re involved in.
A bus accident can be more complicated than one between two private passenger vehicles because the parties involved are more numerous, and sometimes, the bus company or even the municipality that operates the bus system may have contributed to the circumstances that led to the accident.
School Bus Accidents
Tens of thousands of families depend on a school bus to allow their children access to education, and parents trust that the bus will transport their children safely to and from school. Unfortunately, school bus accidents are common, and many innocent children are harmed.
In cases like these, your bus accident attorney may name the driver as the primary party responsible for the bus accident and the school system as a secondary defendant. Many school districts suffer from bus driver shortages, which may mean that not all drivers were properly trained or vetted before hiring.
Public Transit Bus Accidents
Public buses are an inexpensive and convenient way to get around the city and are often used by commuters as part of an eco-friendly way to save on gas.
City bus operators may drive hundreds of miles daily over all kinds of road surfaces, including construction zones or inclement weather. All this travel quickly adds up, and city buses experience more wear and tear than most other types of vehicles.
The cities or municipalities responsible for administering the bus lines ensure that each vehicle is safe for travel. Improperly maintained buses are more dangerous to drive and can cause accidents that a driver may not be able to avoid.
In these cases, your bus accident lawyer may look at the driver and the city, inspecting safety training for operators and the maintenance records of the bus involved. Your bus accident lawyer may also question any third-party maintenance providers who may not have properly fixed or serviced the bus.
Freight Bus Accidents
A freight bus primarily transports cargo, not people, and is specifically designed to carry heavier loads. Freight buses may have longer routes than city buses, traveling at higher speeds on interstates between one city and another.
These buses need longer distances to stop because the extra weight creates more inertia. And the cargo inside the freight bus can shift as it travels, especially when the bus makes 90-degree turns or is on a curvy or uneven road surface. Uneven cargo makes tipping accidents much more likely.
An overloaded freight bus can cause catastrophic injuries to people in a collision.
In a freight bus case, your bus accident attorney may have multiple defendants who share in the responsibility for the accident, including the bus driver, the agency operating the bus travel, and the shipping company or party responsible for loading the cargo securely.
Commercial, Private, and Charter Buses
A private or charter bus is a commercial vehicle available for rent as part of tours for a club or other organization to transport students long distances for school trips, tournament games, or for private individuals who want to go on a road trip together.
Even though charted motorcoaches are used for private business, their operation is still overseen by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which means that drivers and bus charter companies must adhere to strict safety guidelines.
If you’ve been involved in a crash with a motorcoach, your bus accident lawyer will investigate how closely the company was following those regulations.
Looking For a Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you have been personally injured recently one of the best decisions you could make right now is to hire a personal injury lawyer. A lawyer will be able to go over your case details and provide the crucial steps you need to have a chance of winning your claim. Emroch and Kilduff is here to support you, reach out to us!
Facts About Bus Crashes
Recently, more than bus accidents injured 25,000 people in collisions involving more than 15,000 buses. Tragically, 232 buses were in fatal crashes.
Bus accidents cause life-changing injuries, like:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Involuntary amputations and loss of limbs
- Traumatic brain injuries, concussions, and skull fractures
- Lacerations, cuts, bruising, and contusion
- Internal organ damage from crushing injuries
- Partial or total paralysis
Bus accidents can be fatal, either at the scene or because a victim was too badly hurt to survive. Hiring a bus accident lawyer can help protect your rights against an irresponsible bus company or an unqualified driver. They can assist in building a claim and bringing the responsible party to justice.
Did a a Bus Accident Injure You?
If you or someone you love was hurt in a collision involving a bus, consult a bus accident attorney as soon as possible. You may have grounds to file a lawsuit against the parties that caused the crash and receive a settlement for your damages.