Articles Posted in Bus Accident

Bus drivers, like taxi drivers, Uber drivers, and truck drivers, have a duty to their passengers as well as to others on the road to ensure that they are safely operating the vehicle at all times. This duty requires that drivers obey all the rules of the road and posted traffic signs, as well as using common sense when operating their vehicles. When a driver of a commercial vehicle fails to exercise the necessary level of care, and an accident results, that driver may be held liable for his negligence through a personal injury lawsuit.

In addition to the driver of the bus, truck, or taxi, the company that employs the driver may also be liable in some situations. When an employee causes an accident while working within the scope of his or her employment, courts may consider a claim against the employer as well as the employee. The legal doctrine that allows these claims is called respondeat superior. A court may also consider a claim for negligent hiring if the accident victim can show that there was evidence the company should have taken into account when making the hiring decision, such as past citations or suspensions.

Fatal Bus Accident Caused by Driver’s Aggressive Passing Results in Four Deaths

Earlier this month in California, a bus accident claimed the lives of four people inside. According to one local news report covering the tragedy, the accident injured a total of 18 people. Evidently, the driver of the bus was attempting to pass another vehicle before the lane the bus was in ended. The bus driver thought that the other driver was going to slow down and allow the bus to pass him before the lane ended. However, the other driver did not slow down and continued at the pace he was traveling. The bus was run off the road and collided with a support beam for an overhead sign, resulting in the accident that claimed four lives.

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Earlier this month, an appellate court in Delaware issued an opinion in favor of a young plaintiff who was injured when she was struck by a car as she was about to board a school bus. In the case, State Farm Mutual Insurance Company v. Buckley, the girl’s family sought recovery from the insurance company that insured the school bus. The court allowed the girl’s recovery because, although the physical collision did not involve the bus, the court determined the school bus was “involved” in the accident because the bus driver signaled for the student to board the bus.

The Facts of the Case

The plaintiff was waiting for the school bus to take her to school. When the bus showed up, the driver stopped the bus and signaled for the girl to board the bus. As she began to cross the street to board the bus, however, a car struck the girl. It was determined that the driver of the car was at least partially at fault for the accident.

The girl’s family sought financial recovery through the insurance company that had insured the school bus. The insurance company contested the claim because the school bus was not involved in the physical collision, and the girl was not aboard the bus when she was struck. The girl’s family claimed that the girl was relying solely on the bus driver’s cue to board the bus, which involved the bus in the accident.

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Commercial carriers, such as buses, trucks, trains, and taxi-cabs, all have a duty to their passengers to operate their vehicles in a safe manner and do everything reasonable to ensure a safe trip. This duty extends to others sharing the road with the common carrier as well. On occasion, however, a bus driver’s attention drifts away from the road, or a truck driver dozes off in the middle of a long journey, putting his passengers and others on the road at an increased risk. When this type of conduct results in an accident, that driver can be held legally responsible for his actions in violating the duty he owed to his passengers and others.

This type of case, generally brought under the legal concept of negligence, relies on an accident victim showing that the common carrier was negligent in attending to the duty he owes his passengers or others on the road, and that the breach of that duty resulted in the passenger’s injuries and damages. If this can be established, the injured party may be entitled to receive monetary compensation for the injuries they sustained in the accident. Such compensation is not normally limited to out-of-pocket expenses and may include additional amounts for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering.

Minibus Accident in France Claims 12 Lives

Earlier last month, a devastating accident in France involving a minibus and a truck resulted in 12 Portuguese tourists losing their lives. According to one local news source covering the tragic event, the accident occurred while the minibus was taking the passengers from Switzerland back to Portugal.

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Unlike most other vehicles, most busses do not have safety belts. In addition, they are large, slow to come to a stop, and can be very difficult to control. It is for these reasons that bus drivers are required to obtain special licenses that permit them to operate these potentially dangerous vehicles, called commercial drivers licenses. In addition to extra licensure requirements, bus drivers are held to a high standard of care when operating their vehicles. This stands true for other commercial vehicle operators as well, such as taxis and large trucks.

Bus drivers have a duty to each of their passengers to take reasonable precautions to ensure a safe trip. Of course, this includes remaining free from the intoxicating effects of alcohol or drugs, even prescription medications. Additionally, in Maryland and Washington D.C., there is a hand-held device ban in place, prohibiting all drivers from using cellphones for texting or talking while behind the wheel. Bus drivers should constantly keep their full attention on the road, and should refrain from talking to passengers, or talking to other drivers over the radio.

When a bus driver causes an accident that results in injury to his or her passengers, that driver may be held liable for any injuries caused through a Maryland or Washington D.C. negligence lawsuit. In addition, it is also possible that the driver’s employer may also be held liable, depending on the circumstances of the accident and the employer’s involvement, if any. Typically, employer liability may arise when a bus driver is negligent in carrying out his or her assigned duties.

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In the later part of October, a bus carrying a college rowing team was involved in a fatal accident with a passenger car. According to one local news source, the accident, which killed one and injured 13 others, occurred on a Pennsylvania highway on a Tuesday evening.

Evidently, the bus was carrying the members of the school’s rowing team back to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania after a competition when it was involved in the fatal accident. According to the news report, it was the passenger car that crashed into the bus, but additional details have not yet been released. What is known is that it was the driver of the passenger car who was killed in the accident.

An investigation is ongoing to determine what exactly occurred in the moments leading up to the fatal accident. As of the publication of the article, no citations had been issued to any of the parties involved.

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