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Millions of people depend on buses every day for safe transport to and from work, school, and for long distance travel. While bus accidents are less frequent than other motor vehicle accidents, when accidents do occur, the resulting injuries can be more severe than those suffered in a car accident.
Buses are higher than standard passenger vehicles and therefore more prone to roll-over accidents. This, combined with the fact that many buses lack safety features such as seat belts, means that passengers involved in a wreck can sustain serious injury. They may also be walking or standing at the time the accident occurs, subjecting them to being thrown about the vehicle.
Injuries suffered in a bus accident may include:
Certain injuries appear only after the day of the accident as the shock and endorphins of the incident wear off. For example, whiplash may not be felt right away, but depending on the severity of the case, a whiplash sufferer may have trouble executing the most common tasks at work and home. Delayed symptoms to look for include:
Concussions may not be initially diagnosed at the time of an accident. Symptoms of concussion may include:
Several different factors may be the cause of a bus accident, some common examples include:
The laws governing fault in a bus accident are very different than those of regular motor vehicle accidents. These types of cases are complex and may involve multiple layers of liability. Those who have been injured in a bus accident should seek the counsel of an experienced Delaware bus accident lawyer.
Passengers hurt in a bus accident caused by negligent driving on the part of another driver may have a third-party claim against that driver. If the bus crashes due to faulty maintenance, the maintenance company may be liable, while a poorly trained driver would leave responsibility with the bus company. However, many buses are owned and operated by cities or school districts and because they are government entities, different rules apply when filing for a claim for injuries suffered in the accident. The time restrictions for filing a claim are limited and once the window of opportunity has been missed or if the claim is not properly filed, the law bars any attempt to recover damages.
Additionally, passengers injured in a bus accident may be able to pursue a claim based on what is known as common carrier law. A common carrier is any person or business engaged in public transport such as buses, trains, taxis, and trolleys. Under common carrier law, such entities are held to a higher standard of care for their occupants. In other words, the public transportation entity must provide a higher standard of care for the passengers than the average driver would have to provide. An injured passenger must be able to prove that the company was negligent to receive compensation.
If you are involved in a bus accident, it is important to seek medical care immediately. Even if you think you are without injury, a medical professional should evaluate your condition and document it in the event any injuries do arise from the accident. If you decide to make a claim you will need to provide any relevant medical records and bills.
Injuries from bus accidents may be severe and have lasting effects that can impact your ability to work and provide for yourself. A successful claim for compensation for your injuries may result in some or all of the following:
The experienced Delaware bus accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow can help you recover compensation for your injuries if you have been injured in a bus accident caused by someone else’s negligence. Contact us online or call 302-427-9500 to schedule a free consultation about your case in our Wilmington office, or call 302-834-8484 for our Bear office or 302-422-6705 for our Milford office. We represent personal injury victims in upstate and downstate Delaware.