No one expects to suffer an injury in a bus accident, but when it does happen, you need the experienced representation from an Oakville personal injury lawyer on your side. Your injuries can change your life in an instant, prevent you from working, and require extensive medical care. At Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi PLC, our personal injury attorneys know what it takes to ensure you receive the proper compensation for your injuries.
Fatal Bus Accident Statistics
The most recent data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) shows that the number of fatal bus crashes across the country dropped by six crashes from 2018 to 2019 (238 to 232), but they are still happening at alarming rates. Even if you suffered a minor injury in a bus crash, you need to seek medical care as some injuries do not show any signs or symptoms until well after the crash.
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Why Bus Accident Injuries Are So Devastating
As one might expect, a bus accident can cause devastating injuries no matter your age. A bus does not offer the protection of a personal vehicle such as a car, truck, van, or SUV. There are no airbags to prevent your head from hitting hard objects, most buses do not have seatbelts, and if crowded, you might be standing during an accident.
Victims of bus accident crashes can be thrown about the bus, hitting windows, doors, poles, and seats. Riders can be thrown into each other and even ejected from the bus. The most serious bus accidents can lead to you being trapped inside until first responders can use the jaws of life to remove pieces of the bus so you can be extricated.
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Common Types of Bus Accidents
Bus accidents can happen for a multitude of reasons, many of which are due to driver error either on the part of the bus driver or another driver. No matter the cause of the crash, you deserve to be compensated when injured. The most common types of bus crashes our Oakville bus accident lawyers see include the following:
- Rear-end collisions
- Front-end accidents
- Side-impact crashes
- Side-swipe accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
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Parties Who Can Be Held Responsible in an Oakville Bus Accident
Multiple parties can be held responsible for an Oakville bus accident. Every accident is different, and not all claims will involve just a single defendant. The following parties can be held responsible for the crash:
- The bus driver
- The bus company
- The owner of the bus
- The city, county, or state
- The bus maintenance company
- The manufacturer of the bus or its parts
It is important that you speak with an experienced bus accident lawyer in Oakville about your case, especially since there might be more than one person liable for the crash. Holding multiple parties accountable for your injuries can increase the value of your claim.
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Seeking Compensation in a Bus Accident Claim
Compensation from a bus accident claim can help you pay medical, utility, and other bills when you are unable to work due to your injury. You can also be compensated for your pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium. If your loved one died in a bus accident, you can also file a wrongful death claim for compensation that pays for their funeral and burial expenses.
The value of your claim will differ from other bus accident claims based on a variety of factors. Those factors include the following:
- The severity of your injuries
- If your injuries will be long-term or permanent
- If you suffered paralysis or another disability as a result of the crash
- The amount of time you miss from work or if you will be unable to return to work
- The evidence supporting your claim
You might also be able to receive punitive damages. Punitive damages can only be awarded by a judge and are done so as a way to punish the defendant for their actions. If the crash occurred in the commission of a crime or the defendant acted purposefully, you are likely to receive punitive damages in your bus accident case.
As you might expect, these are not the only damages you can claim in a bus accident lawsuit. It is best to speak with an Oakville bus accident lawyer about your case so you can find out all of your available options for compensation.
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Filing Deadlines for Bus Accident Claims
Did you know that you do not have an unlimited amount of time to build a case and file a claim against the at-fault parties in a bus accident? In fact, Tennessee has one of the shortest statutes of limitation in the country, at just one year. You have one year from the date of the accident to file a claim or else you risk losing out on the opportunity to recover compensation.
This makes it even more important to speak with a bus accident lawyer immediately following a crash. You need to begin the legal process immediately so you file a claim on time.
Documents Needed When Meeting with a Lawyer
When you meet your Oakville bus accident attorney for the first time, you should bring the following documents with you:
- The police report
- Your medical records
- Witness contact information and their statements
- Pictures and video of the crash
- Insurance information
- Results of any investigation or accident reconstruction
If you forget one of these documents at the initial consultation, it will not derail your case. However, you should forward them to your attorney as soon as possible so they can begin the legwork.
Call a Bus Accident Attorney in Oakville Today
If you or a loved one suffered an injury in a bus accident, you need to seek medical care immediately. You then need to speak with an Oakville bus accident lawyer from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi PLC. Call our office, or submit our contact form to schedule an initial consultation today.
The sooner you speak with an attorney, the sooner you can get on the road to financial and physical recovery.