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Bus Accidents: Causes & Consequences

Whether you are taking a public bus to work, placing your child on a school bus, or taking a charter or party bus to a destination, if an accident occurs, it could be devastating. The large size and limited maneuverability of a bus, coupled with the fact that riders are not required to wear seatbelts and are even permitted to ride standing, can mean serious injuries or fatalities in the event of an accident.

Passengers in an open cabin are not secured in any way, and can suffer severe injury including:

  • Bone fractures
  • Cuts and bruises
  • Spine damage
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Burns
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement
  • Brain injuries

These types of injuries require medical treatment and possibly hospitalization, surgery, and rehabilitation. Your injuries could possibly have lifelong effects. In the event that you are injured in an accident, you may be able to collect compensation for your medical and rehabilitative costs, lost wages due to diminished earning capacity, pain and suffering, and more.

Common Causes of Bus Accidents

Bus accidents are caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Bus operators who drive while fatigued
  • Poorly maintained bus equipment or parts
  • Drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Buses that are improperly loaded or overloaded
  • Drivers who lack adequate training or who were not properly prescreened for employment

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Regulations

The U.S. Department of Transportation's FMCSA has created a list of regulations for motor carriers to help ensure the safety of everyone on the road. Passenger carriers, like bus drivers, are held to strict standards, including hours of service and periodic drug testing.

The maximum amount of time that a bus driver is allowed to drive while on duty is ten (10) hours following a consecutive eight (8) hours off duty. Drug testing is also conducted to ensure that bus drivers stay clean and sober before being allowed on duty.

By following these regulations, employers and employees of bus services can decrease the potential for risk to their passengers. Accidents can still happen, however, when bus drivers engage in careless or reckless behavior.

In addition to FMCSA regulations, bus drivers are also expected to exercise good judgment and reasonable care while driving. For example, a recent news story highlighted a Waterbury, CT bus driver who was caught on video constantly checking her phone while transporting a bus full of passengers. This driver was not exercising her duty of care, and her negligence could have caused a serious accident.

Contact Tracey & Fox to Review Your Legal Options

The Dallas personal injury lawyers at Tracey & Fox understand that bus accident victims may be going through one of the most challenging times in their lives. Allow our firm to help take care of your legal issues while you focus on healing and getting back to your life. Our caring, compassionate team has nearly 100 years of collective legal experience, and can help you seek justice for your case. Contact us today to begin your free case evaluation.

Whether you are taking a public bus to work, placing your child on a school bus, or taking a charter or party bus to a destination, if an accident occurs, it could be devastating. The large size and limited maneuverability of a bus, coupled with the fact that riders are not required to wear seatbelts and are even permitted to ride standing, can mean serious injuries or fatalities in the event of an accident.

Passengers in an open cabin are not secured in any way, and can suffer severe injury including:

  • Bone fractures
  • Cuts and bruises
  • Spine damage
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Burns
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement
  • Brain injuries

These types of injuries require medical treatment and possibly hospitalization, surgery, and rehabilitation. Your injuries could possibly have lifelong effects. In the event that you are injured in an accident, you may be able to collect compensation for your medical and rehabilitative costs, lost wages due to diminished earning capacity, pain and suffering, and more.

Common Causes of Bus Accidents

Bus accidents are caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Bus operators who drive while fatigued
  • Poorly maintained bus equipment or parts
  • Drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Buses that are improperly loaded or overloaded
  • Drivers who lack adequate training or who were not properly prescreened for employment

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Regulations

The U.S. Department of Transportation's FMCSA has created a list of regulations for motor carriers to help ensure the safety of everyone on the road. Passenger carriers, like bus drivers, are held to strict standards, including hours of service and periodic drug testing.

The maximum amount of time that a bus driver is allowed to drive while on duty is ten (10) hours following a consecutive eight (8) hours off duty. Drug testing is also conducted to ensure that bus drivers stay clean and sober before being allowed on duty.

By following these regulations, employers and employees of bus services can decrease the potential for risk to their passengers. Accidents can still happen, however, when bus drivers engage in careless or reckless behavior.

In addition to FMCSA regulations, bus drivers are also expected to exercise good judgment and reasonable care while driving. For example, a recent news story highlighted a Waterbury, CT bus driver who was caught on video constantly checking her phone while transporting a bus full of passengers. This driver was not exercising her duty of care, and her negligence could have caused a serious accident.

Contact Tracey & Fox to Review Your Legal Options

The Dallas personal injury lawyers at Tracey & Fox understand that bus accident victims may be going through one of the most challenging times in their lives. Allow our firm to help take care of your legal issues while you focus on healing and getting back to your life. Our caring, compassionate team has nearly 100 years of collective legal experience, and can help you seek justice for your case. Contact us today to begin your free case evaluation.

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