Passengers on buses are not immune to injuries from accidents. The NHTSA reported 134 deaths in school-vehicle-related crashes alone in 2015. Unfortunately, bus accident cases can be exceptionally difficult without representation, as lawsuits against government entities require special procedures and may be subject to stricter deadlines.
Speaking with a Henrico County bus accident lawyer immediately can help individuals avoid costly mistakes and pursue fair compensation for their injuries.
Buses operating in and around Henrico County generally fall into three categories:
In Virginia, buses are common carriers and owe a higher duty of care to passengers. At the same time, buses often lack some of the protections found in a car. The exclusion of airbags and seat belts increases the likelihood of an injury after a collision. The injuries sustained in a bus accident are often severe, such as whiplash, head trauma, and broken bones.
Filing a claim for an injury that resulted from a GRTC or government-owned bus accident is complicated. Employees of municipalities often have sovereign immunity, which protects them from personal injury claims.
Under Virginia Code § 15.2-209, plaintiffs have only six months after an accident to give notice of the intent to file a claim against a government entity. Failure to give notice to the county, town, or city within this window could result in your inability to file a claim.
Anyone involved in an accident with a city bus should contact a Henrico County bus accident lawyer as soon as possible for help pursuing the case in a timely manner.
Common carriers owe a very high duty of care to their passengers because they are responsible for the safety of passengers who are paying for the ride.
As a result, a claimant only needs to show that a common carrier failed to exercise slight care that resulted in an accident, as opposed to reasonable care for most other traffic accidents.
Similar to government-owned bus accidents, drivers of school buses are often afforded sovereign immunity, provided they did not exercise gross negligence that contributed to the crash. However, a claim may still be possible against a school district for failing to protect the passengers of a school bus.
If you were a passenger on a school bus during an accident, a Henrico County bus accident lawyer can inform you of your rights and help you file a claim in a timely manner.
After a bus accident, victims should seek medical attention as soon as possible. It is essential to document any costs associated with the accident, including medical bills, and photographs any injuries.
Recoverable compensation in a bus accident claim can include:
A claim can be filed with the government agency or company that controls the bus. If the government agency or company denies the claim, the next step is getting help from a Henrico County bus accident lawyer.
Filing a lawsuit for damages sustained in an accident can be difficult. Issues of sovereign immunity and limited timeframes to file a claim can make bus accidents even more complicated.
If you were hurt in a bus accident, consider seeking help from a Henrico County bus accident lawyer. Call today to discuss your case.