California Bus Accident Lawyers
For more than 30 years, our Southern California personal injury law firm has been representing clients who have been injured in bus accidents. Whether as a pedestrian, a driver, bicyclist or bus passenger, if you have been involved in such an accident, you need seasoned lawyers on your side. These cases involve deep legal complexities. Often, a bus company, bus driver, or municipal or county entity that oversees the operation of mass transit will deny responsibility if an accident occurred. We know how to hold responsible parties accountable for your injuries. We have helped our clients recover more than $220 million dollars in compensation. We can help you.
You may have been involved in an accident that involved a tour bus operator, an airport mass transit vehicle, a metro-bus or other similar vehicle. Local governments, large corporations, and massive insurance companies may all have a stake in your case. Furthermore, bus maintenance records, driver background, and vehicle safety may all be at issue. Our lawyers know what to look for in such cases. For the help you need anywhere in Los Angeles County, reach out to the proven professionals of Freeman & Freeman for a free consultation.
Common Causes of Mass Transit Accidents
A study by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration concluded that human factors were the most common cause of bus accidents. In 90% of the study cases, such accidents were caused by human error including bus driver errors. The report cited some of the following examples of driver negligence that contributed to mass transit accidents and bus catastrophes: texting while driving, speeding in bad weather, and abrupt lane changes. Poorly trained drivers, inadequate safety equipment, poorly maintained vehicles, drug or alcohol abuse, municipal government failure to ensure safe road conditions...the list is long for the possible causes of a mass transit accident. We know who to uncover the truth in such cases.
Determining Liability in a Bus Accident
Bus accident cases require the specialized work of an experienced California bus accident lawyer. Public bus systems are usually shielded by complex negligence standards because of the government's interest in immunity from private lawsuits. For this and many other reasons, a qualified bus accident lawyer is essential in such cases. Our lawyers have navigated the complicated cases many times before. The question of liability depends upon the circumstances of each individual bus accident. Any of the following parties may be responsible:
Private bus company: if the bus is owned by a private company, it may be found liable for passenger injury if it failed to keep the bus properly maintained and an unsafe condition lead to an accident (such as faulty brakes, bald tires, malfunctioning doors, etc.). The company is also responsible for hiring qualified drivers. If driver negligence was the cause of the accident, there is a high likelihood that the company will be held liable.
State or local government: if the bus is government-owned, the city, county, or state is responsible for its drivers and for the proper maintenance of its buses. The government may also be liable for failing to maintain roads where an unsafe condition caused an accident.
Bus driver: a bus driver can also be held individually liable for passenger injury if his or her negligence caused an accident. However it is usually the driver’s employer and its insurance company that is held financially responsible.
Bus maintenance companies: if the bus owner contracts with an outside company to maintain its buses in a safe condition, that company may be sued if a bus accident is caused by negligent maintenance.
Bus manufacturers: the manufacturer, retailer or distributor of a bus (or one of its component parts) may be held liable if a manufacturing defect caused an accident.
Other motor vehicle drivers: drivers of other vehicles may be held liable if their negligence caused a bus accident. The owner of the vehicle or the employer of the driver may also be liable in some circumstances especially if the incident is related to a truck accident.
Lawyers for Injured Bus Passengers
As a passenger, a bus company owes you the "utmost duty of care" as a common carrier. This duty is higher than the duty the bus company and its driver owes to other drivers and pedestrians. If you have been injured in a bus accident, you need an experienced bus accident lawyer who can hold a bus company to those standards and make them accountable for the injury they have caused. Our lawyers for injured bus passengers will help you seek well-deserved compensation. Call us today for a free case evaluation.