Buses have become a popular mode of transportation for large-scale movement, catering to both adults and children. While a van can accommodate up to 8 people, a passenger service bus can carry up to 70 passengers at once. Consequently, bus drivers are expected to exercise caution while driving due to the significant number of passengers onboard. A careless mistake could have catastrophic consequences. Like any other form of transportation, buses are susceptible to accidents when drivers act negligently. Unfortunately, the fatality rate in such accidents is higher compared to those involving smaller vehicles.
Although school bus accidents are less frequent than crashes involving public service buses, their repercussions are not limited to parents alone. According to the National Safety Council, school management and local government agencies are also affected. The law classifies individuals under the age of 18 as children, requiring specific care and attention to ensure their safety. If a collision occurs, those responsible for safeguarding the well-being of children may be held accountable for any resulting harm.
Due to their unique nature, the operation of school buses is governed by specific laws designed to safeguard children. If your child has suffered harm while traveling to or from school, or if you have been involved in a collision with a school bus, it is important to seek the assistance of a Pearland school bus accident lawyer. A qualified accident attorney can work with you to file your claim.
Unlike other drivers, individuals entrusted with the responsibility of transporting students and young children undergo specialized training. Due to the age of these children, they may engage in activities that pose potential risks to their safety. Therefore, drivers must receive proper training to ensure the protection of children and know how to respond in the event of a road crash.
However, not all school bus accidents result from student mistakes. Typically, these crashes occur due to various reasons, including:
Drivers are expected to remain vigilant and identify potential safety hazards at all times. For instance, they must make informed decisions on navigating challenging weather conditions like heavy fog and mist to prioritize the safety of passengers.
In such cases, they have the right to delay departure until it becomes safe to proceed with the journey. If errors in judgment by the school bus driver contributed to the collision, your accident attorney may hold them directly responsible for the crash.
Determining fault in a school bus accident case differs slightly from other types of car accidents. Legal liability in your child’s accident depends on the individuals or parties involved. This means that there may be parties with immunity against legal charges in a collision. For instance, if the accident involves a government-owned bus or school, you will face stricter legal measures when filing your claim against a government entity.
Even if a negligent school bus driver caused the crash, suing a government entity will be more challenging compared to other types of road accidents. In such cases, it becomes crucial to have a skilled lawyer who can navigate the more stringent process of a school bus accident case. When a private citizen is at fault, you can hold that person accountable for your child’s injuries. Typically, the driver has no immunity, and if their negligent actions contributed to the accident, you can file a lawsuit for damages. Other potential at-fault parties may include bus maintenance companies, auto manufacturers, or other drivers.
If a school bus maintenance company is found liable for the crash, your attorney may pursue compensatory damages against them. These companies are expected to perform proper maintenance and ensure the bus is handled without any errors or improper repairs. For example, if a maintenance company fails to adequately repair faulty brakes, leading to a crash, they may be held responsible for the accident. You can hold them accountable for any injuries your child may suffer as a result.
If the accident was caused by a manufacturing defect or design flaw, your legal representative may hold the bus manufacturer accountable for the incident. This legal action can be directed at different parties involved in the production chain of the bus, including the manufacturer, distributor, broker, and any other relevant party depending on the circumstances.
While a school bus driver may receive proper training, they may not be held responsible for the negligent actions of other drivers or pedestrians. If a careless driver or pedestrian causes the school bus driver to swerve off the road while attempting to avoid an accident, the other driver may be at fault for the resulting injuries and damages.
If your child has been injured in a school bus accident, it is crucial to pursue the necessary claims for the harm caused. Please reach out to our Pearland school bus accident lawyer for experienced legal assistance.