What Are Some Common Bus Accident Injuries?
Generally speaking, the injuries sustained in bus accidents are more severe than those suffered in car accidents. Every year, thousands of people are injured in these crashes, and dozens are killed. More often than not, it is not a driver or passenger of the bus who dies but rather an occupant of a vehicle struck by the bus.
Some of the most common bus accident injuries include the following:
- Brain injuries
- Neck and back injuries (e.g., whiplash, herniated disc)
- Broken bones
- Amputated limbs
The medical bills, lost wages, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment from these types of injuries can be overwhelming.
How Do Bus Accident Injuries Happen?
Like car crashes, bus accidents often occur because the bus driver was speeding, distracted, and/or under the influence. But there are also factors unique to buses that can increase the risk of incident:
- Bus driver was not adequately trained
- Bus driver was fatigued from too many trips/shifts
- Bus was not properly maintained
- Bus was overloaded
In the case of school buses, tragedy can strike if the driver lacks a permit or fails to take proper precautions. For example:
- Not activating flashing red lights and stop sign as children get on/off the bus
- Not waiting for traffic to stop before allowing children on/off the bus
- Failing to monitor children’s progress as they cross the street
If you were injured in a collision with a bus and were not at fault, you should contact an attorney to determine if you have a case. Don’t wait. Many states require that a motor vehicle lawsuit be filed within two years of the crash.
If I File a Bus Accident Lawsuit, Whom Do I Sue?
It depends. It’s common for an injured person to file a lawsuit against the bus driver’s insurance company, but there are several parties who could be liable for these injuries:
- The owner of the bus (whether a private company or public/government entity)
- The company tasked with maintaining the bus
- The manufacturer of the bus or parts therein
- The municipality in which the accident occurred
- The bus driver
For example, if a faulty automobile part caused the crash, the manufacturer might be liable. If the company that owns the bus forced the driver to work too many hours without rest and the driver dozed off, that company might be held accountable.
All too often, the responsible party will deny liability and try to pay the injured person as little as possible. For that reason, after a bus accident, an injured person should always contact an attorney to determine if they qualify for a bus accident injury claim.
How Can a Lawyer Help?
An attorney can help determine if someone should file a bus accident lawsuit. If so, they will help steer the plaintiff through the legal process, poring over police and medical records, interviewing witnesses, consulting experts, and negotiating with the other side. They will build the strongest possible case so the injured party can focus on getting better.
Importantly, most personal injury attorneys are free to hire unless the client wins a settlement or jury verdict, at which point the attorney accepts a percentage of the money recovered.
Bus crash injuries can devastate a person’s health, career, and finances. As a result, there are many types of damages a person may be able to recover through a lawsuit:
- Medical bills (medication, hospital stays, physical therapy, etc.)
- Pain and suffering (physical pain and/or emotional distress)
- Lost wages and loss of earning capacity
- Loss of life’s enjoyment
- Funeral expenses
- Other damages (e.g., compensation for disability or disfigurement)
Full compensation for these damages can help a person put their life back together. If you think you might qualify for a bus accident lawsuit, please don’t hesitate to contact us.