Commercial bus travel is one of the safest modes of transportation. It averages the fewest number of deaths and injuries by collision and is second in safety to air travel. Despite the low number of deaths and injuries, bus crashes still happen. If you are ever involved in a bus accident, here is what you should know.
Bus accident injuries
Bus accidents typically do not result in severe injuries for passengers. Buses, because of their size and weight, can defend their passengers far better than smaller vehicles can protect their occupants. In high-speed accidents, however, buses are prone to rollovers. Injuries from rollovers may include:
- Cuts and abrasions
- Lung injuries from smoke inhalation
- Spinal injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
Symptoms from some injuries, like whiplash and TBI, may take 24 hours to appear. If you need medical treatment or suffer a diminished quality of life due to the accident, you could be entitled to compensation.
Determining who is at fault for a crash can be challenging. If a road was poorly maintained, for example, a governmental entity could have been negligent. If the bus had a defective part, then then the manufacturer of the part could be responsible. Any or all negligent parties may be responsible for your injuries.
Steps to take before seeking compensation
Documentation of the accident and your injuries is extremely important. Take the following steps after a bus accident:
- If safe to do so, take pictures of the scene and any injuries you received from the collision. Save these for your records.
- Document all accident-related expenses. These should include medical bills, lost wages, and prescriptions.
- Begin keeping a daily diary to record how the collision is impacting your life.
Insurance companies for each of the responsible parties will respond to litigation with their attorneys. Their attorneys are tasked with minimizing the insurance payouts, which can impact your compensation. If you do not hire an attorney, you would face these insurance defense lawyers on your own.
Besides leveling the playing field, your lawyer will investigate the crash and use the findings to gain insight into contributing factors of the accident. Your attorney can get witness statements and review police records. In short, an attorney will fight on your behalf to seek fair compensation.