Bus drivers undergo additional driving training and are held to high standards. And yet, they can still cause an auto accident. When you’re the victim of one of those accidents, all that extra training and high standards don’t mean much.
The actions that you take after a city bus accident will be crucial to ensuring that you aren’t left with enormous bills after the accident. City bus accidents are not as clear cut as a regular auto accident because there are more parties involved in such an accident.
Because buses are so large, they can also cause greater damage, which might mean that pursuing a lawsuit against the at-fault party is more important. Here are the steps you should take after a city bus accident to protect your rights and your financial status.
Steps to Take After a City Bus Causes an Auto Accident
A city bus accident shares some similar steps to what you should do after a regular auto accident. But you’ll also find there are some additional steps you should take when a city bus is involved and not just another passenger vehicle.
Here are the important steps you should take following a city bus accident:
- Call 911: have the police come out and document the situation and file a police report. This will make it easier to prove fault, though it doesn’t entirely solidify fault.
- Get to a safe place: don’t start discussing the matter with the bus driver until you’ve gotten your vehicle to a safe place.
- Document the driver’s information: write down the bus driver’s name, who they work for, the company that services the bus, the bus license plate, etc.
- Collect witness accounts: the bus passengers can serve as witnesses to what happened. But if other motorists also saw the accident, get their witness statements too.
- Take photos: remember to take photos of both your car and the city bus that hit your vehicle. Take photos of the intersection where the accident took place and any tire marks on the road.
- Contact an auto accident attorney: the sooner you get in touch with an attorney, the better. This will allow your attorney to go to work for you and handle the interactions with the city bus driver’s insurance company to get your car fixed as soon as possible and ensure your medical bills get paid.
Possible Additional Parties Involved in City Bus Accidents
City bus accidents can be extremely complicated when it comes to evaluating fault for the accident. While driver error is most likely the reason behind the accident, a variety of other factors could be at play. Here’s a look at the parties who could be responsible for your injuries after a city bus accident.
- The bus driver’s union: this depends upon the driver’s contract and liability for such accidents.
- The city that employs the bus driver.
- If another company is responsible for the bus maintenance, that maintenance company could be at-fault for the accident if the bus malfunctioned.
- When a faulty part causes the accident, the part’s manufacturer could be liable for the accident.
- Indiana Department of Transportation in some rare circumstances could be liable for your injuries.
Because there are so many parties that could be involved, city bus accidents are extremely complicated. Filing an insurance claim with the city’s insurance company can be confusing and have layers of bureaucracy that you must go through just to get your bills paid. When that’s the case, get in touch with an auto accident lawyer immediately.
What Compensation Can You Seek in a City Bus Personal Injury Lawsuit?
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident that a city bus causes, you can seek compensation for a variety of financial damages. You might face some struggles in getting the insurance company to pay for anything other than your vehicle damage without a lawsuit.
But in serious accidents, the vehicle damage is only the beginning of the financial struggles you face after an accident. Here’s a look at some of the additional areas of compensation you can seek.
- Medical bills: make sure you keep every invoice and receipt from your medical providers related to injuries you sustained as a result of the accident.
- Lost wages: you might have to miss work to attend medical treatment or to stay home and heal after the accident. Depending on what you do for a living, you might not be able to work for an extended period after your accident until you’re back to full strength.
- Pain and suffering: life is not as enjoyable when going through a serious injury. You have to go through a great ordeal due to the neglect of the city that oversees the bus services. Seek compensation for such pain and suffering as part of your lawsuit.
Your auto accident attorney will recommend a settlement amount to seek based on your specific injuries. At Stewart & Stewart, we work hard to provide the best outcome for auto accident cases. Get in touch with us to learn more about our services and to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.