Whether you are driving in your car or using public transportation to get to work, you could be the victim of a serious bus accident. Busses are common sights on our roads and highways, especially around larger towns and cities where public transit is more common. Because busses are so large, the injuries and damages from an accident tend to be severe.
If you are injured in a bus accident, your injuries could be extremely painful and possibly long-lasting. Many bus accident victims are left with debilitating injuries. In extreme cases, people are killed in bus accidents. You can sue for damages for your injuries, expenses, and suffering. If your loved one was killed in a bus accident, you could sue for wrongful death. The unique factors of your case should be discussed with an attorney.
Your damages from a bus accident deserve compensation. Bearing the burden of medical bills, property damage, physical pain, and emotional trauma should not go unnoticed by our justice system. For a free legal consultation regarding a personal injury lawsuit, see our Pennsylvania bus accident lawyers. Call the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 709-6940 to speak to our legal team about your bus accident.
Why Should I Sue After a Bus Accident in Pennsylvania?
A bus accident can lead to catastrophic injuries. These injuries tend to come at a great financial cost to victims. Not only that, but victims suffer in other, non-economic ways that must be taken into account. In cases where a bus accident victim unfortunately passes away, their family may sue for the personal injuries the victim could have sued for themselves had they survived, in addition to damages for the family’s losses.
Personal injuries from a bus accident can include medical bills, property repairs, pain and suffering, lost income, and more expenses. Medical bills can be expensive even for minor treatments. Bus accident victims may incur expensive treatments like surgery, physical therapy, and costly medications. The time missed from work to recover from injuries and medical procedures could cost a bus accident victim money in lost wages. The costs of repairing or replacing a vehicle after a bus accident may also be very high. All these damages and more must be considered in a personal injury lawsuit.
Wrongful death is unique because it may include damages suffered by the decedent in addition to damages suffered by surviving family members. You could sue for the medical expenses incurred by your loved one before they died and the funeral expenses after death. You may also sue for things like a loss of consortium, companionship, and the decedent’s financial support. To get a better idea of the damages that may exist in your case, speak to our Pennsylvania bus accident attorneys.
People Liable for Bus Accidents in Pennsylvania
Liability for a bus accident can be a complex question to answer. Plaintiffs will, of course, want to hold the bus driver responsible for the crash. However, under the right circumstances, the bus driver’s employer may also bear some blame.
Drivers have a big responsibility when operating a vehicle as large and heavy as a bus. Not only is such a giant vehicle likely to cause serious damage in an accident, but the driver is also responsible for the passengers on board. As a common carrier, the driver of a bus owes a significant duty of care to passengers. Many bus accidents are caused by driver errors, such as failing to check blind spots, turning without signaling, speeding, and inattentive driving.
Private businesses that own the bus and employ the driver can also be held responsible in certain circumstances. An employer may be held liable for an employee’s actions if the employee was acting within the scope of their job duties. If the driver did something like drive the bus while off duty, their employer might not be liable. However, if the driver was so incompetent that the bus company should have known better than to hire them at all, the bus company could be held liable for negligent hiring or entrustment.
Not all busses are owned and operated by private individuals or businesses. Many busses serve as public transportation and are run by public or government entities. If your accident involved a public or government-operated bus, your lawsuit will proceed differently. You must serve notice to the government within 6 months of your accident if you want to sue. If this time passes with no notice served, you may be barred from filing your lawsuit. Talk to our Pennsylvania bus accident lawyers for more information.
Proving Fault for a Bus Accident Case in Pennsylvania
Once you have decided to file a lawsuit against the bus driver who caused your accident and possibly their employer, you will need to begin gathering evidence of fault. To hold the defendants liable, you must prove that the driver is at fault for the accident. While bus accident cases may vary from case to case, many revolve around the bus driver’s negligence. Proving a driver was negligent and at fault for the accident requires proving four distinct elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages.
Duty refers to the legal duty of care owed by the defendants to the plaintiff. While all drivers owe a legal duty to drive reasonably carefully under their current circumstances, a bus driver might be treated differently because they are a common carrier of passengers. The breach of duty refers to what the defendants did to violate their duty of care. Causation is the connection between the breach and the duty. Finally, damages must be real and actual, not just hypothetical.
You will need to gather evidence of the bus driver’s wrongdoing and your damages. Evidence including information obtained from a police report, any tickets issued to the bus driver for traffic violations, and witness testimony from other passengers or other drivers may help prove fault. Your medical bills and medical reports may be used to establish your injuries and damages. Gathering evidence can be difficult if you try to handle your case alone. Call our Pennsylvania bus accident attorneys for help.
Call Our Pennsylvania Bus Accident Attorneys
After a bus accident, you could be severely injured. The idea of filing a lawsuit from a hospital bed would be stressful, to say the least. Let our Pennsylvania bus accident attorneys help you. Call the Reiff Law Firm at (215) 709-6940 to schedule a free legal consultation about your accident.