Common Causes of Bus Accidents
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Sean A. Koch with Law Office of Bruce A. Ralston.
Taking the bus can be an eco-friendly and traffic reducing alternative to driving a standard passenger car. However, buses have the same potential to be involved in accidents as any other vehicle. While the injuries tend to be less severe, neck and back injuries are not at all uncommon in bus accidents. If you have been injured in a bus accident, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your damages, including medical bills, lost wages, and more. Reach out to a bus accident attorney to discuss your situation and learn about your options for physical and financial recovery.
Some common causes of bus accidents include the following:
- Distracted driving: Texting while driving or otherwise engaging in an activity that takes the eyes, hands, or mind off driving can have serious consequences for bus passengers and other vehicles.
- Violating traffic rules: It is especially imperative that bus drivers follow all traffic rules. Due to the relative size, weight, and number of passengers on a bus compared to a car, it may take a bus a significant amount of time to react to hazards on the road.
- Speeding: Speeding is dangerous regardless of the vehicle, but can be particularly dangerous for buses which often contain many passengers, their belongings, and may require longer distances to stop.
- Fatigued driving: Driving while tired is extremely dangerous, and while any driver may find themselves fatigued while driving, bus drivers spend most of their time on the road and are more likely to experience this phenomenon.
- Driving under the influence: Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or another inhibiting substance can have severe consequences for anyone involved in a bus accident. It is imperative that bus drivers report for work fully rested and free from the influence of outside substances.
- Faulty equipment: Faulty equipment and mechanical failure is a risk with any vehicle, but may be a bigger problem for buses. With buses covering more mileage a day than the average car and being used with great repetition, it’s easy for these vehicles to break down over time and for equipment to fail. It is important for the transportation company to conduct routine maintenance checks on all equipment going out.
- Aggressive driving: Aggressive driving can be particularly dangerous in a bus, as it is often harder for other drivers to maneuver or get out of the way of such a large vehicle, creating a higher potential for accidents.
- Passenger interference: Unruly passengers can be a distraction and a driving risk. If passengers interfere with the bus driver resulting in an accident, they could face serious consequences.
- Restricted area for maneuvering: This is particularly a hazard in urban environments or areas where there isn’t much room for a bus to drive, turn, or otherwise maneuver.
- Road conditions: Road conditions may be affected by elements such as weather and construction. If road conditions are not ideal, it is more likely that a bus accident may occur.
- Other drivers: Other drivers may be unaware of the time and skill it takes to drive, turn, reverse, or stop a bus, causing them to create unsafe situations with their own driving. Cars cutting off or tailgating buses are common causes of bus accidents.
If you or a loved one were injured in a bus accident, you may be eligible for compensation. Reach out to a bus accidents attorney to learn more.