People take the bus every day without giving it much thought. When individuals board a bus to commute to work or for a night on the town, safety is one of the last things on their minds. However, it is important that they remember that their safety is in the hands of the bus company and bus driver. Accidents can happen at any time, and bus accidents can cause the same injuries as car accidents and come with unique injuries of their own. These injuries are often much worse than those sustained in a car accident. If you take the bus often, here are some things you should know.
Injuries from Bus Accidents
As mentioned above, injuries from bus accidents can be much worse than those received in car accidents. This is because:
Buses have little to no passenger safety equipment, such as seat belts
Buses are prone to rolling over
Buses require that passengers keep their belongings with them, leading to projectile injuries as passengers and their belongings are thrown around the bus during an accident
Actions That a Seriously Injured Passenger Should Take
A passenger who has sustained injuries in a bus accident should immediately seek medical attention. In the best-case-scenario, the passenger should inform the bus driver, who will call 911 to get paramedics on the scene. If for some reason, the bus driver or other passengers refuse to do this, the injured passenger should call 911 themselves.
After receiving emergency medical treatment, the passenger should follow up with their family doctor for additional medical care and testing. Some insurance companies will not allow claims for injuries after a certain amount of time has passed, and if an injured person wants to make a personal injury claim, they must do so before the deadline has passed.
Tests that an injured passenger should ask for include testing for back, spinal, and head injuries, as symptoms of these injuries often take days to weeks to appear and can show up after the deadline for claims has passed.
Actions That a Mildly-Injured Passenger Should Take
If a passenger is not severely injured, they should document the accident as best as they can. Passengers should try to record:
- The names and contact information of witnesses
- The names and contact information of the drive and other passengers
- Photographs of the scene of the accident from as many angles as possible
- The names and badge numbers of police officers at the scene of the crash
Getting this information will help the passenger take further action if needed.
Who is Liable for a Bus Accident?
Many parties could be liable for a bus accident. Typically, a bus accident is caused by the bus driver, a third-party driver, or both.
If a third-party driver caused the accident, the injured passenger could make a claim against that driver’s insurance company for compensation. However, if the party at fault was the bus driver or both the bus driver and third-party driver, making a claim becomes more challenging.
In these circumstances, it is best to consult a bus crashes lawyer near you.
Can the Injured Passenger Sue?
An injured passenger should speak with a bus accident lawyer in Calgary as soon as possible after their accident, even if they aren’t sure if they want to take legal action. A bus accident lawyer can:
- Determine who is at fault for the accident
- Help the injured passenger find doctors to aid with their injuries
- Understand and explain what options the passenger has
Anyone who has been involved in a bus accident should seek medical attention and then consult a lawyer for guidance.