Buses on the road have some of the same inherent problems that 18 wheelers do: they are much bigger than the rest of the cars on the road, and especially at high speeds, they can cause devastating accidents. But buses pose an even greater risk. They aren’t transporting cargo; they are transporting people, often children. At Kirkendall Dwyer LLP, whether you were injured while riding in a bus or as a passenger car sharing the road with a bus, we can bring you the expertise and care needed to resolve your bus accident claim.
Bus Driver Negligence
Driving a bus takes a great deal of focus, especially considering that the inside of a bus
can be a distracting place to be. Whether the bus passengers are children or adults, a bus
driver is obligated to be trained, qualified, and prepared for the challenges of the road.
But often, they are not. There are many forms a bus driver’s negligence can take: he might be driving too fast in the particular weather conditions, or possibly might be under the influence of alcohol or drugs. He might have been using a cell phone, which is banned for bus drivers.
It is important to note that buses fall under the category of “common carriers”, an important distinction for your case. Common carriers are those that are hired by members of the public to transport passengers or goods, and these vehicles are held to a higher standard of care than other vehicles on the road. This means that bus drivers are required to exercise a level of care that a very cautious or prudent person would exercise under similar circumstances. The purpose of this rule is to protect the passengers who entrust their safety to these businesses, and have no way of protecting themselves in the case of an accident. The common carrier rule makes it easier to prove that the bus driver in your bus accident was negligent.
Whatever the details of the case may be, if the bus driver violated this stringent standard
of care and acted within the scope of his employment, the driver’s employer can be held
responsible for your accident as well. To prove that he was acting within the scope of his employment, it must be shown that he was performing the duties that he was hired to perform. This opens up another avenue for recovery.
Texas Tort Claims Act
In most circumstances, the government is immune from lawsuits, but under the Texas
Tort Claims Act, a city or municipality can be sued for the actions of an employee that
injures others within the scope of his employment, especially if he is operating a motor
vehicle. This means that if your child was injured in a school bus accident, or if you
were injured in or by a DART bus, you have the option of pursuing a claim against the
The Texas Tort Claims Act was designed to help victims in situations like these, but
you need someone with comprehensive legal knowledge to help guide you through it.
There are limits on the amounts that you can recover for your accident, and time limits in
addition to the statute of limitations that you must abide by when filing your claim. One
of these time limits is the requirement of filing notice within a certain amount of time
(often 30 days, but can vary from locale to locale). If you fail to follow such rules, you
will unintentionally forfeit your right to file a claim. Call one of our attorneys today to
help ensure you get the recovery you deserve.
Bus Company Negligence
Busing companies hold the responsibility of hiring bus drivers that will be able to uphold
its duty of the utmost care to its passengers. There are many ways for companies to
investigate the histories of their potential drivers, and there are just as many ways that
they may fall short in doing so as thoroughly and meticulously as possible. An employer
must investigate a potential employee’s driving history from every state in which he has
a driving record, and the employer must take particular care to ensure that the bus driver
has no history of alcoholism or citations for drinking and driving.
Our attorneys will bring the resources necessary to fully investigate every aspect of your
bus accident claim. Even if the bus company performed the proper background checks,
we can use medical records, witness interviews, and bank records to find out if there was
any reason the bus company should have known that the bus driver would not be able to
exercise this level of care.
School Bus Accidents
There is nothing more traumatic for a parent than a child getting hurt. But unfortunately, school bus accidents are a reality. Thousands of kids ride to school or field trips on buses everyday. When the worst happens, we are here to help.
As in other car and truck accident cases, it is always possible that there was a defective
part in the bus. Whether it was a part that malfunctioned or a part that failed to function,
the manufacturer of the part will be liable if the part caused your injury.
Only after a thorough investigation can such liability be determined. The amount of
evidence and the expert witnesses required to establish liability would be complex in this
situation, and you need an experienced attorney in order to succeed in such a claim.
Our Attorneys are Here for You
Our attorneys are here to give you the individual attention that your case needs and
deserves. Bus accidents are multi-faceted and need dedicated resources and legal
knowledge. Our team will investigate every possible avenue of recovery to make sure
that your compensation is complete. Let our team handle your case. When searching “bus accident lawyer Dallas” contact Kirkendall Dwyer LLP, and we will help you.