Bus Accidents in Tennessee
Bus accidents in Tennessee can cause devastating injuries to passengers, motorists, and pedestrians alike. Knoxville bus accident attorneys, Betz & Baril are skilled personal injury lawyers with over fifty years of experience representing accident victims, including those injured in bus collisions.
Buses accidents in Tennessee can occur in cities like Knoxville, Nashville, and also can occur outside of cities in rural areas. According to the National Transportation and Safety Board, over 750 million passengers board buses annually. Because of their size and the number of passengers they carry, accidents that involve a bus can be catastrophic.
They transport large numbers of passengers at a time, which can lead to a significant number of injuries and deaths in an accident. In 2010, there were 27,000 individuals injured in bus accidents and 246 fatalities, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. There were over four hundred injuries as a result of bus accidents in Tennessee in 2012. Passengers are injured due to structural bus damage and ejections. The injuries can be severe, long-term, and sometimes life-threatening.
Different Types of Buses
A bus is classified as a passenger vehicle with the capacity to carry more than 10 people at a time, carrying two axles and six tires or three or more axles. As such, these vehicles can weigh well over 10,000 pounds and in many cases do not have safety devices like seatbelts to protect their passengers. Because of this, injuries in bus crashes oftentimes involve passenger ejection or even driver ejection.
The following is a summary of the various types of buses:
- Charter buses
- Double-decker bus
- School buses
- Sleeper bus
- to name a few.
Buses generally are used for commercial purposes, however they can be converted and people sometimes use them for personal travel or long trips. When sharing the road with a bus always remember to drive defensively and avoid their blind spots. Never assume the bus sees your vehicle, and for pedestrians it is especially important to be aware that the drive may have difficulty spotting you.
Liability for Bus Accidents
Liability for Bus accidents are complex, and the careless acts of more than one person or entity may be the cause of the accident. In Tennessee, all motorists have a duty of care when operating their vehicles. Bus drivers and bus companies, however, must exercise a higher duty of care to ensure the safety of their passengers.
This includes not only safe driving on the part of the bus driver, but also bus inspection and proper maintenance on the part of the bus company which can create liability. A range of federal regulations govern bus operation to ensure the safety of passengers. Despite the heightened level of care and government regulations, a negligent bus driver or bus company may still cause a catastrophic collision. A bus accident may have multiple causes. Several factors may lead to a bus accident, including:
- Driver-related factors, such as speed, fatigue, or failure to yield the right-of-way
- Vehicle deficiencies, such as a defective tire or lack of maintenance
- Dangerous roadway conditions
- Alcohol or drug use
- Driver inexperience
- Poor visibility
ties may cause an accident, it does not have to be just one party. If a bus accident was caused by the reckless actions of one or more parties, they may be held accountable for any injuries that result from the accident. If you were involved in a bus accident, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries.
It is important to conduct an exhaustive investigation to identify which parties caused the accident and are liable for your injuries. Once the negligent parties are identified, you can potentially file a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages for your medical bills, any extended long-term care, loss of income, and pain and suffering.
Bus accidents can also result in death. You may file a wrongful death claim if a loved one was if you lost a relative in a bus accident. This can allow you to recover for your loved one's pain and suffering, medical expenses, funeral costs, and loss of consortium. Call Betz and Baril, experienced bus accident attorneys that will fight to get you all the compensation you deserve.
Injuries Associated with Bus Crashes
In 2009, the U.S. Department of Transportation reported over 20,000 injuries caused by bus accidents and 254 deaths nationwide. The harm that is done during an accident can be enough to permanently alter or end a life, as the statistics express.
Based on crash data, the following injuries are some of the most common physical damage caused by a bus accident:
- Facial Disfigurement
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Passenger ejection
- and more
After an accident it is vital to seek medical attention immediately, even if it does not appear that you have been injured. The symptoms of internal organ damage can sometimes take up to a week or more to manifest, and a physician will be able to diagnose any suspicious signs before they become an issue.
If you are the victim of serious personal injury from a bus crash in Tennessee, contact Betz & Baril and explore the rights you have to file a claim against the negligent party or parties.