Whether your child takes the bus to school or you use the public bus to get to work, many people rely on the bus for public transportation. Even though buses share the roads with other motorists, very few people believe that buses can be involved in traffic accidents. However, they can. Bus accidents are just as capable of happening as car or truck accidents.
When you or a loved one have been involved in a bus accident, you need an experienced Memphis personal injury lawyer from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC, to fight with you for the compensation that you deserve.
Bus Accident Statistics
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 232 buses were involved in fatal traffic accidents in 2019. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that 5,237 large buses and trucks were involved in fatal crashes in 2019. The agency also reports that between 2009 and 2019, intercity buses accounted for 12% of all fatal bus crashes, while school and transit buses accounted for 39%.
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Causes of Bus Accidents
Some of the common causes of bus accidents include driver negligence, fatigue, blind spots, poor vehicle maintenance, and more. Every bus accident is different, which is why you should always speak to a bus accident attorney in Memphis when injured in one.
Car drivers are not the only drivers who can engage in negligent actions on the roads. Bus drivers can participate in negligent actions that can place bus riders in jeopardy. These actions include cutting other drivers off, speeding, and failing to make safe turns.
Bus drivers who operate transit or commercial buses can drive for long periods. The longer periods on the road can cause bus drivers to become tired behind the wheel. Fatigued bus drivers become more distracted and lose control behind the wheel.
Blind Spot Accidents
Like trucks, buses have larger blind spots to overcome. When a bus driver fails to properly check their blind spots while driving, they increase the chances of hitting another car as they attempt to merge.
Poor Vehicle Maintenance
Bus companies are responsible for maintaining that all buses are safe to operate. When the parts of a bus have become defective from constant wear and tear, it can increase the chances of being involved in a bus accident. If a bus’s tires blow out or there are issues with the steering wheel, it is guaranteed that the bus will become involved in an accident.
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Injuries from Bus Accidents
The injuries from bus accidents can be quite serious. Common injuries include spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, bruises, lacerations, and nerve damage. Because many buses lack safety features like seatbelts, bus riders are more likely to become ejected from buses in the event of an accident. If the bus accident is very severe, it can cause some bus riders to experience instant death.
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Liability in Bus Accidents
Being involved in a bus accident can cause you to experience serious injuries. Even after you have sought medical assistance for your injuries, it will be a long road to a full recovery from your accident. You may still be at risk of suffering PTSD or other mental disorders and may require additional medical services like physical and speech therapy to help you recover from your injuries.
You may also need financial assistance due to your injuries and taking time off from work. Because a bus accident is considered a personal injury accident, you have the right to sue for your injuries in an accident.
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Damages from a Bus Accident
After being injured in a bus accident, you would be able to sue for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, funeral expenses, and others.
You can seek compensation for any medical expenses you pay out of pocket. Any surgeries, emergency room services, pain medications, and in-home medical assistance that you pay for can be compensated through your lawsuit.
You can also seek compensation for the income you lost out on due to your injuries. You can request copies of your log records and calculate the days you had to take off from work. If your injuries are so severe that you can no longer perform your job duties without medical assistance, you also have the right to sue for the income you would have obtained if not for your accident.
Pain and Suffering
You can seek compensation for the physical pain and mental anguish caused by your accident. There is a difference between the medical expenses you pay for your injuries and the physical pain you endure from your accident. Any pain you experience during and after your accident can be compensated for in this type of damage. This type of damage can also cover any mental anguish that is related to your bus accident.
If your loved one loses their life in a bus accident, you can seek compensation for the funeral and burial expenses.
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Explaining Sovereign Immunity
Sovereign immunity is one of the legal issues you may face in your bus accident lawsuit. Sovereign immunity is a legal concept that protects government agencies and employees from being sued. Because some buses are funded through government agencies, you may be required to follow certain procedures to determine if you are even allowed to file a lawsuit against a government agency.
With sovereign immunity, you must file your lawsuit against the government agency within a few months.
Contact a Bus Accident Lawyer in Memphis Today
When you or a loved one have been involved in a bus accident, you deserve to be compensated for your injuries. Like all accidents, your bus accident could have been prevented. You deserve to seek compensation from the negligent person who was responsible for your bus accident.
At Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi PLC, our Memphis bus accident attorneys are ready and willing to fight just as hard as you are for your compensation. Call our office, or submit our contact form to schedule a free initial consultation with a member of our team today.