Who Is At-Fault If I Was Injured in a Bus Accident?

Who Is At-Fault If I Was Injured in a Bus Accident?

Personal Injury Lawyer

Most people view buses as being a reasonably safe form of transportation. In fact, millions of people ride buses on a regular basis as a way to get to school, work, go on a tour, and much more. Bus accidents are more rare than other types of car collisions, however, this doesn’t mean that they won’t result in tragedy. Many passengers get injured each year due to bus accidents. Because it’s a rare situation to be a part of, passengers may not know what to do, who is at-fault, and how they can seek compensation for damages and losses.

What kinds of injuries may passengers sustain?
Bus accidents can lead to a wide range of injuries, including sprains, whiplash, broken bones, severe bruising, organ damage, concussions, and even fatalities. Because of how buses are constructed, passengers tend to endure injuries that they may not have in other types of vehicular collisions.

For instance, buses have a higher center of gravity which makes them more likely to rollover, most do not have seat belts, and passengers have to carry their possessions. With these variables considered, passengers may be tossed around within the bus if it does rollover, and their belongings can become projectiles.

What makes bus accidents different in a legal sense?
In a typical car accident, each driver’s insurance company will basically handle the negotiation and resolve the claim. But with bus accidents, there are unique legal problems that may not be a factor in other automobile collisions. Passengers probably do not have insurance coverage that would compensate them for bus accident injuries, there could be a third party involved in the collision making the situation more complicated, and the bus may have certain liability immunities.

What happens if another party was at-fault?

If the bus was hit by another car, you may be able to file a third-party claim with that driver’s insurance company to pursue compensation for medical bills, loss of wages, and property damage. If the driver was responsible, though, it may not be as simple as that. Buses are commonly operated through government agencies, such as school districts and local transportation entities. Filing a claim against a school district or other government party is significantly more challenging than your average insurance claim.  

Does this mean I should sue the government agency?
If you were in a bus accident, the best thing you can do to figure out how you should respond is by meeting with an attorney. Instead of trying to do all the research yourself about who to file an action against and how, your attorney can assess your individual circumstances and provide exact information on what you should do next. As your attorney may tell you, lawsuits filed against government agencies must have the following elements:

  • A claim that states who it is being filed against, such as a public body, agency, or officer
  • A description of the event which gave reason for the claim, explaining why the accused party is responsible
  • How the party had failed to prevent injury that was more than just simple negligence, but was considered gross negligence or other basis for government liability

If you or someone you know has been injured in a bus accident, contact a lawyer, like a personal injury lawyer from Johnston Martineau, LLP, today. 

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