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Giving a Voice to the Injured

Virginia Bus Accident Attorneys

Bus Crash Injuries On the Rise

Buses are modernizing to meet the changing transportation needs of Americans who now have access to ride-sharing services and other more private commuting options. Many cities are doing their best to expand options and services not only to support their public transportation system but also to remove cars from roads and cut down on emissions.

Here are some common types of buses:

  • Public Transit Bus
  • School Bus
  • Shuttle Bus
  • Tour Bus
  • Coach Bus
  • Minibus or Van
  • Articulated Bus
  • Double-Decker Bus
  • Electric Bus

While more buses may equate to less carbon dioxide, they, too have their downsides. Between 2016 and 2017, the rate of fatal crashes caused by buses and large trucks increased by 9%. If bus travel continues to increase in popularity, that trend is likely to continue.

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Call our experienced team of bus accident lawyers in Alexandria, VA at (571) 290-2390 to schedule a free consultation.

Get the Financial Help You Deserve After a Being Injured in a Bus Crash

Because of their size and weight, public and commercial buses are more likely to cause serious injuries to passengers and other drivers when involved in a collision. If you were harmed in a bus accident that was caused by another person's negligence, you deserve compensation to help with medical bills, the costs of missing work, and other difficulties you are likely facing.

Serious Injuries Caused by Bus Crashes & Negligence

It is far more likely drivers, bicyclists, or pedestrians will be injured or killed in a bus accident compared to those on board. Of course, this does not guarantee riders will remain safe; they may be thrown by the force of an impact or suffer injuries during a rollover.

Common injuries caused by bus accidents include:

Passenger or non-occupant alike, anyone who sustains serious damage because of a bus accident will likely be able to recover compensation to help treat their injuries.

    Determining the Cause of Your Bus Accident

    A bus accident refers to any collision, incident, or event involving a bus that results in damage to property, injuries, or fatalities. Buses, being large and often carrying a significant number of passengers, can be involved in various types of accidents.

    Common causes of bus accidents include:

    • Driver Error: This is one of the leading causes of bus accidents. It includes actions such as distracted driving, speeding, reckless driving, fatigue, and failure to obey traffic laws. Bus drivers are responsible for the safety of their passengers, and any lapses in attention or judgment can lead to accidents.
    • Poor Weather Conditions: Adverse weather conditions, such as rain, snow, ice, or fog, can make roads slippery and reduce visibility. Buses are susceptible to accidents in such conditions, especially if drivers fail to adjust their speed and driving behavior accordingly.
    • Vehicle Mechanical Failure: Mechanical failures, such as brake malfunctions, tire blowouts, or engine problems, can lead to accidents. Regular maintenance and inspections are crucial for preventing accidents caused by mechanical failures.
    • Poor Road Conditions: Roads with potholes, uneven surfaces, or inadequate signage can contribute to bus accidents. In some cases, poorly designed intersections or road construction zones may increase the risk of collisions.
    • Inadequate Training: If bus drivers are not adequately trained or lack proper certification, they may be more prone to errors on the road. Training is essential for handling the unique challenges associated with driving large vehicles like buses.
    • Intoxication or Substance Abuse: Bus drivers operating under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or prescription medications can impair their judgment and reaction times, leading to accidents.
    • Other Drivers' Actions: Accidents can result from the actions of other drivers on the road, such as reckless driving, failure to yield, or running red lights. Buses, due to their size, may be more vulnerable to the actions of smaller vehicles.
    • Fatigue: Long hours of driving without adequate rest can lead to driver fatigue, reducing alertness and increasing the risk of accidents. This is a particular concern in the transportation industry, where drivers often have demanding schedules.
    • Passenger Behavior: Disruptive or unruly behavior by passengers can distract the bus driver, potentially leading to accidents. Ensuring the safety and order of passengers is an essential aspect of bus operations.
    • Negligence of Other Parties: Accidents can occur due to the negligence of third parties, such as contractors responsible for bus maintenance, manufacturers of faulty bus components, or entities responsible for road maintenance.

    The first question to ask is who or what caused the accident. If blame is split between multiple parties or can be debated, insurers might try to assign blame to each other, so they do not have to pay.

    Was the accident caused by:

    • A mistake made by the bus driver?
    • A third party (car, pedestrian, etc.) breaking traffic rules?
    • An equipment malfunction?
    • An unsafe section of road?

    Accidents Caused by the Driver of Another Vehicle

    If another driver caused a bus accident, anyone who was injured as a result may file claims against that person’s insurance. Due to the large number of victims these accidents can have, it may be hard to recover compensation, especially if the driver only carries the minimum policy amounts required. If you find yourself in this situation, our Virginia bus accident attorneys may be able to help you find another way to pursue compensation.

    Accidents Caused by the Bus Driver

    When the accident is caused by the bus driver, there are a few factors that could affect who is liable, including the type of bus involved.

    • 40% of bus accident involve school buses,
    • 35% involve transit buses,
    • 13% involve intercity buses,
    • The cause of the remaining 12% of accidents was not specified.

    The liability holders for each of these accidents are different. When a bus is government-owned, such as school buses and most transit buses, you may have to abide by extra rules and shorter deadlines if you want to file a claim. Facing a school district or government agency can be difficult and frustrating due to the amount of red tape involved.

    Whoever owns or charters a commercial bus is typically liable for any accidents caused by its driver. The responsibility may be shared between more than one party in these cases. When a driver’s mistake or a maintenance issue causes a problem, liability does not usually rest with the individual. It sits with the company that made negligent choices that put bus passengers and other road users in trouble.

    Virginia MetroBus

    Holding the Liable Party Accountable

    To succeed in a bus accident lawsuit in Virginia, you generally need to establish the following elements to prove your case:

    1. Duty of Care: You must establish that the defendant (usually the bus driver, bus company, or another party) owed a duty of care to the plaintiff. Bus operators have a duty to operate their vehicles safely and responsibly, taking reasonable steps to prevent harm to passengers and others on the road.
    2. Breach of Duty: You need to demonstrate that the defendant breached their duty of care. This could involve showing that the bus driver was negligent, failed to follow traffic laws, operated the bus recklessly, or engaged in behavior that deviated from the standard of care expected of a reasonable person in similar circumstances.
    3. Causation: You must establish a causal connection between the defendant's breach of duty and the injuries or damages suffered by the plaintiff. In other words, you need to show that the defendant's actions (or inactions) directly led to the harm.
    4. Damages: You need to prove that you suffered actual damages as a result of the bus accident. Damages may include medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. Having clear documentation of these damages is crucial for a successful claim.

    If the bus driver was acting within the scope of their employment, the bus company or operator may also be held liable for the actions of their employee. This concept is known as vicarious liability.

    An experienced and determined Virginia bus accident attorney from our firm can help you determine the cause of your accident pursue monetary compensation for any injuries you have sustained.

    The types of damages that you may be compensated for include:

    • Medical treatment
    • Missed wages
    • Loss of quality of life
    • Pain and suffering, and more

    While an accident claim main seem straightforward, no insurance company wants to pay out hundreds of thousands of dollars in a settlement. You need an attorney who knows the law and won't back down from a fight. The Barrera Law Firm has over 75 years of combined experience representing clients who have been harmed by negligence in Virginia, Maryland, and D.C.

    How Can a Bus Accident Lawyer Help With My Case?

    Our Virginia bus accident lawyers provide expertise, investigation skills, and legal representation for bus accident cases. We can help you to:

    • Investigate the accident
    • Determine liability
    • Deal with insurance companies
    • Calculate damages
    • Advocate for fair compensation

    We handle settlement negotiations and, if needed, will also represent you in court. Hiring our bus accident attorneys ensures your rights are protected and increases your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome.

    The Barrera Law Firm: Proven Results

    At The Barrera Law Firm, we know how difficult it can be to deal with insurance adjusters while trying to recover from a serious injury. Not only do our Virginia bus accident attorneys take this burden off your shoulders, we also put our extensive experience and resources to work pursuing maximum compensation for damages you've sustained.

    Some of our accident-related case results include:

    With over 75 years of legal experience under our belts, our team members are familiar with the moves insurance companies may make to deny you fair compensation. We can fight on your behalf to help you receive the settlement you need for a full recovery.

    Call our Virginia bus accident lawyers at (571) 290-2390 to learn about your legal options after a bad accident.

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    Why Choose The Barrera Law Firm, PLLC?

    • Over 75 Years of Combined Legal Experience
    • $75 Million in Recoveries for Clients
    • Client-Centered, Hands-On Approach
    • Bilingual Staff & Attorneys
    • Over 100 Cases Taken to Trial
    • Complimentary Case Consultations
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