According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were as many as 11,000 injury crashes and 223 fatal crashes involving buses in 2014, the most recent year on record. The agency’s Analysis Division prepares an annual report called Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts (LTBCF), which contains information about large truck and bus crashes nationwide. Read on for more information about different types of bus accidents, and your risk of being injured in one.
School Bus Accidents
An average of 14 school-age children are killed in pedestrian accidents involving school buses every year, and approximately six children die annually as passengers on school buses. As such, experts are consistently calling for the improvement of safety protocols. If your child has been injured in a school bus accident, a skilled Boston injury lawyer can help you determine how to proceed.
Safety Tips for School Bus Drivers
According to the National Safety Council, most school bus-related fatalities involve children between the ages of four and seven, and occur when they are walking. School bus drivers can help prevent these accidents by:
- Never blocking a crosswalk when stopped at a red light.
- Always yielding to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk in a school zone.
- Always stopping for a crossing guard with a stop sign.
- Using extra caution in or around school zones, playgrounds, and residential areas.
- Never honking at a pedestrian.
- Never passing another vehicle that is stopped for pedestrians.
Public Transit Bus Accidents
Public transit buses account for more than 30 percent of annual injury accidents involving buses. Unfortunately, there are generally limits on injury claims against state and municipal agencies, including public transport companies. An experienced MA personal injury lawyer can help you recover damages if you’ve been injured in an accident involving a public transport bus.
Tour bus accidents
Accidents involving tour buses are more likely to be catastrophic due to the number of miles driven and the number of passengers typically on board. Earlier this year, a tragic bus accident in Texas killed all but one passenger. Members of a Baptist church were en route when a passenger truck collided with their bus, killing 11 passengers on the bus, the bus driver, and the driver of the truck.
Common Causes of Bus Accidents
As with any type of motor vehicle accident, bus accidents can be caused by multiple factors, including speed, equipment malfunctions / defective parts, and OUI. The most common causes include:
- Distracted driving (texting or using another hand-held device while behind the wheel)
- Driver impairment (OUI due to alcohol or drug use)
- Use of excessive speed
- Aggressive driving
- Mechanical failures
- Tire blow-outs
What to Do After a Bus Accident?
If you’re injured in a bus accident, the first moments are crucial. As with any type of motor vehicle accident, seek medical attention if you have suffered any type of injury. It’s wise to do so even if you’re not sure, injuries can take days or weeks to appear. Take pictures of the scene, including any obvious injuries that you or any other passengers suffered. Request contact information from as many passengers as possible, so that you can contact them in the future if necessary. Continue reading