Driving through Tennessee or another Southern state, you are likely to see buses on the road year-round. School buses, city transit buses, Greyhound, Megabus, and charter buses are only some of the buses that share the road with other trucks and cars. When buses collide with smaller cars, complicated situations may arise. For starters, those in the smaller vehicle may suffer serious injuries since many buses weigh over 30,000 pounds. Further, a bus accident could result in dozens of injured parties, depending on the level of occupancy of the bus. To speak with a Memphis bus accident attorney, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz today. Our injury lawyers are dedicated to fighting for the rights of accident victims, and we have recovered over $1.5 billion in compensation for injured clients and their loved ones.Types of Bus Accidents
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) defines a bus as any motor vehicle designed primarily to transport nine or more persons, including the driver. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, there were more than 69,000 bus accidents in the United States in 2014 alone. Bus accidents commonly involve school buses, city transit buses, Greyhound, Megabus, charter buses, and shuttle buses.Recovering Compensation Following a Bus Accident
Bus accident injuries can be severe. If a large bus strikes your car, the size of that bus can overpower your vehicle and cause you to sustain critical injuries. Those on board the bus may not be that much better off. For instance, many school buses lack seatbelts and other safety features, which could lead to multiple injured children should the school bus driver veer off the road or strike another car. If you or a loved one was injured in a bus wreck, it will first be important for a bus accident lawyer in the Memphis area to help determine the cause of the crash. As common carriers, bus drivers and bus companies are held to high standards. Common causes of bus accidents in the South include:
- Driver negligence
- Inadequate maintenance of the bus
- Defective equipment
- Inadequately trained drivers
- Fatigued driving
- Distracted driving
- Driving under influence of alcohol or drugs
In a bus accident case, claims may be asserted against multiple defendants, depending on the facts. An obvious defendant would be the negligent bus driver. Each state has its own laws regarding the standard of care drivers must abide by on the road. Failure to meet that standard, such as texting while driving, speeding, driving under the influence, or taking similar action, is considered negligence in Tennessee. Passenger-carrying bus drivers must also follow specific hours of service regulations per FMCSA guidelines. Disregarding those regulations could amount to negligence per se, which would then shift the focus of the case to injuries and damages.
The bus driver’s employer could be liable for a bus crash as well. Confirming ownership of the vehicle will be vital. If the bus is owned by a private company, the legal standard of care could differ than if the bus is owned or operated by a government entity. The theory of vicarious liability holds that an employer may be responsible for the negligence of its employee committed within the course and scope of employment. For instance, if an organization chartered a bus to drive its members from Memphis to Nashville, and the bus driver rear ended an SUV while driving the group on Interstate 40, vicarious liability for the wreck will likely apply since the bus driver was on the clock and acting pursuant to his or her employment duties. To ensure that all avenues of recovery are explored in your case, you should speak with an experienced bus accident attorney in the Memphis area. Otherwise, you may not be able to recover damages sufficient to satisfy all of your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.Call NST for a Free Consultation with Our Bus Accident Lawyers
If you were hurt while riding on a bus or if a bus struck your vehicle, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz today. Our Memphis bus accident lawyers can take the steps necessary to investigate your accident and help you recover the compensation to which you are entitled. With a team of over 30 lawyers and 120 support staff members, we serve people injured in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Jonesboro, Little Rock, Jackson, Meridian, Tupelo, Columbus, Grenada, Starkville, Oxford, Hayti, and Caruthersville, as well as other communities in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, and Kentucky. For a free consultation with an auto accident lawyer, call 800-529-4004 or complete our online form. Let us show you why NST is the way to go.