For many people commuting to work, traveling to or from school, or simply running errands, public transportation is an integral part of their day. These individuals trust that the bus is mechanically safe and that the driver is properly trained and licensed. A bus driver is supposed to be properly trained and carry a driver’s license with a special endorsement allowing them to operate a vehicle transporting more than ten passengers. School bus drivers need an additional endorsement in addition to that as well. Despite all of these requirements, accidents involving buses are still common, particularly in tour groups in which drivers are often unaware of California’s traffic laws.
Because of the size and mass of buses, and because so many passengers are typically present on each bus, the injuries that result from bus accidents can be serious and traumatic. Although school buses are required to be equipped with seatbelts, commercial buses and public transit buses are not. Even many school buses fail to stay in compliance with California state law. As a result, when a collision occurs, passengers are thrown from their seats. Common injuries can include factures, broken bones, and other orthopedic injuries.
Bus and metro accidents can create a confusing web of liability. Only a personal injury lawyer can identify the parties that must be held accountable and their varying degrees of fault. Often, negligence can be found on part of the bus driver, other vehicles on the road, the bus company employing the driver, the owner of the bus if separate from the bus company, the city, and others.
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