It can be a terrifying experience to be the victim or learn that your child was injured in a school bus crash. Unfortunately, many of these tragic accidents are caused by school bus drivers, schools, and other at-fault parties. If you want to obtain the compensation you or your child deserve for your injuries, you need to understand the negligent actions that cause these avoidable collisions and who your child or you can seek compensation from.
Common Causes of School Bus Crashes
Children on school buses are not the only victims of school bus accidents. Drivers and their passengers in other vehicles are also injured in these collisions. Negligence is often the cause of these wrecks. Reasons these accidents occur include:
- Unsafe driving. If a bus driver speeds, makes unsafe lane changes, fails to yield the right away, or engages in other unsafe driving practices, they can cause a school bus accident,
- Drowsy driving. Bus drivers often work long hours and may have a second job to support themselves and their families. If they do not get enough rest, they can become drowsy or fall asleep at the wheel and veer into oncoming traffic, fail to see a traffic light change, or not be able to take other actions to avoid a crash.
- Intoxication. It is especially dangerous for bus drivers to drive when intoxicated due to drug or alcohol use. Their reaction time, judgment, and vision would be impaired, increasing the risk that they will cause a bus accident.
- Weather. Bus drivers must often drive in bad weather. They are likely to cause a collision if they do not reduce their speed on slick roads.
- Distracted driving. Bus drivers who text, talk on a cellphone, or check the internet while driving have their minds and eyes off their driving—dramatically increasing the likelihood of a collision.
- Other motorists. Not all bus accidents are caused by the bus driver. The driver of a motor vehicle can also engage in negligent driving practices that result in crashes with a school bus.
- School district negligence. If the school district hired an unqualified bus driver or failed to supervise and train them properly, they may face liability if the bus driver causes a wreck. They could also be responsible if the failure to properly maintain or repair the bus was the reason for the collision.
Liable Parties in a School Bus Accident
If you were the victim of a school bus accident, you must pursue claims against all potentially liable parties. This will increase the likelihood that you will obtain all the compensation you deserve in your settlement.
You need the help of a knowledgeable car accident lawyer to determine the cause of the bus crash and who could be responsible for compensating you. Potential negligent parties include:
- School bus driver
- School district
- Third-party contracted to provide bus services
- Facility responsible for maintaining and repairing the bus
- Another negligent motorist
- Bus and parts manufacturer
Do you need to file a claim for compensation after a school bus accident? Our experienced car accident lawyers are here to fight with the insurance company for the compensation you are entitled to under Virginia law. Call our Norfolk office at 757.625.1214 or contact us online to schedule your free initial consultation today to learn more about how we can assist you.