Anyone who uses public and/or mass transportation — and we include in this broad category chartered and school-owned buses — likely doesn’t consider for a moment that they might be seriously injured or killed during the trip. Unfortunately, even though we all would like to believe that every mode of transportation that we choose to ride aboard is the safest and most risk-free like any other, that is sometimes not the case. The fact is, people are hurt every day in traffic accidents involving city buses, school buses, taxicabs, hired cars and limousines.
As Maryland personal injury attorneys, I and my staff of legal professionals know full well that there are no guarantees in this life, but there still exists an expectation of safety from public carriers. Bus accidents can sometimes be very dangerous, if only for the fact that quite a number of tour buses, school buses and shuttle vehicles do not have seatbelts for every passenger.
Even so, hundreds of thousands of people use public transportation every year across the nation never thinking of the potential downside of a serious traffic accident. We are mentioning this due to the news article that we saw earlier this month, which described a tour bus crash that injured a number of kids and their parents in Kentucky. The bus was reportedly bound for our nation’s capital, but hardly got much farther than a couple miles before the driver apparently lost control of the vehicle.
According to news articles, a couple dozen students and adults were hurt as a result of the crash that happened on a Wednesday evening in early June. The chartered bus was reportedly carrying close to 60 people, more than half of which were students from a local school. Based on state police reports, the trip was not school-related, though there were a number of 6th and 8th graders aboard, as well as a number of high school-age kids.
Apparently owned and operated by an out-of-state travel company in the Indiana area, the bus was less than ten miles into the trip when it reportedly left the roadway and crashed along a stretch of Kentucky’s Rte 728, about 70 miles south of Louisville. The accident occurred a little before 6pm local time, with news reports stating that the vehicle ran off the right-hand edge of the road as it was traveling around a curve. No other vehicles were involved, which is somewhat fortunate since a large tour bus like this one can cause severe damage to a passenger car if a traffic collision was to occur.
The accident happened just seven minutes into the journey; just six miles from the point of departure. Among those hurt, most of whom received only minor injuries, more than 20 people were taken to a local hospital for examination and possible treatment. Of the more seriously injured, one individual suffered a head injury, while some others had broken bones of one type of another. It should be note that none of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening, according to reports at the time.
The driver was reportedly tested for alcohol and/or drugs, but police stated that there was no indication of impaired driving.
Field trip crash: Dozens of students, parents injured as Ky. tour bus flips; MSN.com; June 7, 2012