Bus drivers have the same obligations as all other motorists to provide protection to other people that they may encounter while on the road. This includes protecting other drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, and people inside the buses themselves.
Unfortunately, failures on the part of bus drivers to provide this protection can result in life-changing injuries. Even if the bus never comes in direct contact with another vehicle, running up on a curb or hitting a light pole can result in harsh injuries for passengers inside the bus.
A Houston bus accident lawyer could help victims protect their legal rights. A hardworking attorney can fight on your behalf to bring the fair compensation needed to set things right. Call now to schedule an initial free consultation.
When is a Bus Driver Liable for an Injury?
Safe driving is a combination of following the rules of the road and attentive operation. As a result, accidents are usually the result of failing to perform one of these duties. An accident may result from a bus driver if they are:
- Failing to yield
- Not checking blind spots before changing lanes
- Ignoring stop signs or red lights
- Texting while behind the wheel
- Driving while tired
Plaintiffs in bus accident cases carry the burden of proving defendant driver negligence. This applies regardless of whether the injured plaintiff was driving their own vehicle, was riding a bicycle, or was a passenger within the bus itself.
Recoverable Damages in a Bus Wreck Injury Case
Bus accidents tend to result in severe injuries because buses are larger than most other vehicles on the road and impart more force in a collision. It is not uncommon for drivers of their own cars to suffer broken bones, separated joints, and traumatic brain injuries in any collision with a bus.
Similarly, harsh injuries can affect passengers within the buses themselves. Since these vehicles often lack simple safety devices such as seatbelts and airbags, even a collision at relatively low speeds can cause a person to hit their head on a window, slide into another passenger, or even fly around the interior of the cabin.
The purpose of a bus accident claim is to collect compensation needed to make the plaintiff whole again. While a physical injury is certainly the focal point of these cases, a thorough case must evaluate the full impact of the incident on the plaintiff’s life. Many claims can also demand compensation for:
- Lost earnings from missing time at work
- Any permanent injury or disfigurement
- Emotional trauma
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
A bus accident attorney in Houston could help plaintiffs measure their losses to determine if any settlement offer is fair. They can also fight for proper payments during all settlement talks or during trials.
Modified Comparative Fault
In addition, plaintiffs must remain aware of the state law concerning modified comparative negligence. According to Texas Civil Practice and Remedy Code §33.003, courts must limit a plaintiff’s recovery at trial if they share some responsibility for an accident. Furthermore, a court will completely eliminate an award at trial if the plaintiff is more than half responsible for the incident. A Houston bus accident lawyer could help to not only prove that a defendant was responsible for the collision but also that an injured plaintiff did not contribute to the incident.
Reach out to a Houston Bus Accident Attorney Today
Pursuing a claim for damages following a bus accident can be a complex and confusing process. Not only do you need to prove that a negligent bus driver was responsible for the incident that caused your injuries, but you also need to identify the proper busing company. This may involve filing a personal injury claim with the city.
A Houston bus accident lawyer may be able to help you to pursue an effective claim for damages. This can include gathering evidence of bus driver negligence, making an accurate accounting of your losses, and working to protect your legal rights in and out of court. To get started on a case, or to learn more about your eligibility for compensation, call now to schedule a free consultation.