Maryland Bus Accident Lawyers
Bus Accidents Are Rare but Serious
Perhaps because they tend to be driven by professionals, buses are rarely involved in accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), bus accidents represent about 0.5% of fatal collisions and an even lower percentage of injury accidents in the U.S. each year.
When a bus accident occurs, however, it has the tendency to be very serious because of the number of passengers it may be carrying. The extremely heavy weight of a bus and the lack of seatbelts or other basic safety measures on most buses may also make these accidents more serious.
Bus Accidents Involving Government Organizations
Bus crashes pose a special challenge for attorneys because so many buses are owned, operated, or hired by government organizations. Federal, state, and local government organizations in Maryland have sovereign immunity, a legal theory allowing them to avoid being sued for some injuries and set strict rules for other suits.
People who were hurt on a municipal bus, school bus, or mass transit bus may sue the government entity responsible for their accidents, but they must follow strict rules to do it, including very short deadlines by which they must notify the organization that they intend to pursue a legal claim. That’s one reason why so many experts recommend strongly that injured people get the help of a lawyer as soon as possible after the accident.
For experienced legal counsel, call our Maryland bus accident attorneys at (301) 812-4777. Your consultation is free, and we have offices in Lexington Park, Bowie, Waldorf, Frederick, Prince Frederick and Rockville to better serve you.
Consequences of Bus Accidents
Bus accidents can affect people both inside and outside the bus. In fact, a crash involving a bus and a car, pedestrian, or bicyclist can be especially serious because of the large weight difference between buses and most other vehicles on the road.
Just like large trucks, buses weigh many times what a passenger car or even an SUV weighs, which means they bring a much greater force to a collision. In a crash, this means the smaller vehicle—or an unprotected person on foot or on a bicycle—is almost always very seriously damaged or injured. The result is death or permanent disability for many victims, regardless of who was at fault.
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Bus Accident?
Many parties in bus accidents are not usually involved in other motor vehicle accidents. Some examples of the individuals, business, and agencies that could potentially be held liable for a serious bus accident include the following:
- The bus driver
- The private company operating the bus
- The government agency responsible for the operation of the bus
- The government agency responsible for the design and maintenance of roadways
- Other motorists
- Bus passengers
- The company responsible for bus maintenance
- The bus manufacturer
Can I Recover Compensation for My Bus Accident?
Not surprisingly, the first thing many victims want to know is whether they will be able to recover compensation for their accident. The answer to their question depends on whether someone else’s negligence caused their crash. Negligence occurs when a person fails to use the degree of care that would ordinarily be used by a reasonable person in the same or similar circumstances. Examples of the kinds of negligence that can lead to a serious bus accident include:
- Distracted driving
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Following too closely
- Failing to account for poor weather conditions
- Hiring unqualified bus drivers
- Impaired driving
- Failing to adequately maintain a roadway
Whether negligence occurred in a given situation is a highly complicated question, and it’s often extremely difficult for non-lawyers to spot negligent conduct. For this reason, anyone injured in a bus accident should review the case with an experienced attorney as soon as possible.
What Should I Do After a Bus Accident?
It’s extremely important for victims to take steps to protect their rights after a bus accident. Here are some of the things you can do to maximize your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve:
- If you’re not too injured to do so, stay at the scene and document information about the accident.
- Seek medical attention, even if emergency medical personnel have cleared you to go home. It’s important that you document your injuries for any claim you may assert in the future.
- Document the way your injuries affect you on a daily basis.
- Do not accept a settlement offer before consulting with a lawyer.
- Contact an attorney as soon as you can.
Call (301) 812-4777 for a Free Consultation
Our Maryland bus accident lawyers have successfully represented clients throughout the state who have suffered serious physical, financial, and emotional losses because of another person or organization’s carelessness. If you or someone you love was hurt in a bus collision, Alpert Schreyer Poe, LLC can help.
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We have over 30 years of experience serving injured clients across Maryland and DC.
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We are willing to visit injury victims at their homes if they are severely injured or bereaved.
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We are not afraid to battle any party, whether big or small, both in and out of the courtroom.
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