Common Reasons for Bus Accidents
While these operators are licensed professionals, there are many variables that can contribute to a disastrous accident on the road, no matter how experienced or skilled the driver may be. The vehicle’s maintenance workers also play a role, and they could have missed something critical during their routine checks of the vehicle.
Some of the most common causes for public transit injuries are:
- wide, sharp turns
- intoxicated bus driver (DUI)
- general disregard for traffic laws
- poorly marked bus lanes
- poor weather
- improperly maintained brakes, tires, or safety equipment
Unfortunately, many accidents could have been avoided if the driver did not initially choose to drive while fatigued or intoxicated. In Nevada, we have one of the highest DUI rates in the United States, and it’s not beyond a bus driver or taxi driver to be drunk or under the influence of drugs while working. Some drivers work long hours on a shift, and while it’s illegal for operators of public transportation vehicles to drive for extended periods of time, these laws can sometimes be ignored.
In most public transportation accidents, the claim is filed against the company, not the driver, since it’s the company that purchases the necessary insurance and is responsible for the maintenance and operator training required for the vehicles. It’s these companies that will also call to settle after such an accident.
It’s important that the victim does not take the initial settlement. No matter how caring, patient, and understanding the company’s representative may be on the phone or in person, they have the company’s best interests in mind, and at the end of the day, the company is looking out for themselves. Even when they accept fault for the incident, these companies can try to minimize the amount of compensation paid out to the victims, which they can do by low-balling the estimates for the victim’s medical care and other damages. For example, if an injured passenger suffers a traumatic brain injury after the accident, the company may cover the costs of the initial ER visit and the immediate medical care, but they can refuse to cover other costs such as lost wages, medication, and physical therapy.
Once a victim accepts a settlement, there’s no going back to ask for additional compensation, no matter how rightful or justified it may
Taking Action: Next Steps and Compensation
At the end of the day, no one deserves to be hurt in a traffic accident. It is the public transit operator’s duty to keep their passengers and other motorists safe, and if you or a loved one have been injured by one of these vehicles, it is your legal right to fight for justice and demand compensation. Even if the injuries may seem minimal at first, there can be complications that arise in the long term that must be rightfully covered by the liable party.
The amount of compensation varies from case to case, but some of the costs that can be covered include:
- cost of initial ER visit
- surgery and medical treatment
- therapy for emotional damages
- long-term rehabilitation
- loss of current and future wages
- property damage
There are two possible ways your case could go: settlement or litigation. With a settlement, the case is still negotiated outside the courtroom, but we can secure a much better payout from the liable company than what you may have been offered initially. However, companies aren’t always willing to provide a fair settlement. In that case, we pursue litigation and file a lawsuit against the company. Not all lawyers have the experience it takes to successfully litigate a case; luckily, at Gazda and Tadayon we are known across Southern Nevada for our ability to litigate even the most challenging cases. We have helped other major law firms on more than 500 outside cases.
In the event of a lawsuit, the case will go to court and be seen by a judge or jury. In either case, we cover all legal fees until we collect from a case, so you can focus on regaining the quality of life you had prior to the accident.