Bus Accident Lawyer: How To Recover Damages

Bus Accident Lawyer: How To Recover Damages

Steven Schwartzapfel -Founding Partner Mar 22, 2022

For more than 35 years, Steven Schwartzapfel, the founding member of Schwartzapfel Lawyers P.C., has been one of New York’s most prominent personal injury attorneys. Steve represents clients in all types of personal injury cases. His experience, skill, and dedication have enabled Schwartzapfel Lawyers P.C. to recover hundreds of millions of dollars for their clients.

Bus accidents are unfortunately very common in New York City and beyond. These serious accidents injure hundreds of people every year and occasionally lead to the deaths of pedestrians, passengers, and other parties.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a bus-related accident in New York State, you may not know how to move forward or how to seek financial compensation for your medical bills, rehabilitation costs, pain and suffering, and other losses. To learn about the steps you can take to protect yourself in the aftermath of a bus accident in NYS, please call Schwartzapfel Lawyers at 1-800-966-4999 today. Or, if you would prefer to first hear more about bus accidents, injuries, and litigation, please read on.

First, let’s break down how an expert bus accident lawyer can help you secure a successful outcome with your personal injury lawsuit.

Are Bus Accidents Common in NYC?

The exact statistics on bus accidents in New York City are difficult to determine. However, recent news articles indicate that buses from the MTA are involved in at least several hundred crashes every year. In fact, over three years, MTA buses were recorded to have been involved in over 21,000 collisions.

Car accidents, too, occur widely and often across the New York metropolitan area. As evidence of this, citywide vehicle collision statistics for December 2021 indicate that 8,454 collisions occurred in this month alone. In those collisions, 311 cyclists and 784 pedestrians were involved alongside the thousands of automobile drivers.

The bottom line is this: Bus accidents are too common in New York City and ,often, they don’t just involve other motor vehicle drivers. Sometimes they involve passengers, pedestrians, roadside workers, vendors, and bicyclists, many of whom are seriously injured as a result.

Causes of Bus Accidents

More often than not, the root causes of bus accidents can be traced to the same problems that cause other car accidents in New York City and beyond. Common causes of bus accidents include but are not limited to:

  • Distracted driving by the bus driver or another driver (e.g. texting and driving)
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Driving on unsafe roads (e.g. areas that are under construction or have been made hazardous by debris)
  • Driving during inclement weather (e.g. rain, sleet, snow)

Ultimately, however, the causes of bus accidents are secondary to another critical fact: bus accidents can be very dangerous for everyone involved.

Can Bus Accidents Be Dangerous?

Yes, absolutely. Buses weigh much more than typical motor vehicles, making them more dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists. While any auto accident can be dangerous or even deadly, bus accidents may lead to severe injuries such as:

  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
  • Broken bones (e.g. fractures of the legs, arms, shoulders, hips, ankles)
  • Lacerations and/or internal bleeding
  • Paralysis or loss of motor abilities due to spinal injuries

With any bus accident, all parties are at risk, as even those inside the bus can be seriously injured. For example, if a motor vehicle impacts a New York City bus by way of a T-bone collision, the bus’ occupants could be seriously injured due to the lack of seatbelts on most buses. Moreover, injuries here may be sustained from the initial impact energy of the crash, from bumping into other people or seats, and/or many other sources.

Often, these injuries will require significant immediate medical intervention as well as ongoing medical help in the future. Such medical assistance can rack up major bills for those involved, throwing their financial security in jeopardy.

Things can be even more serious for individuals injured outside a bus. Cyclists, pedestrians, and other motor vehicle drivers can be left gravely injured, permanently disfigured, and even killed due to the physical impact of a multi-ton bus.

Suffice it to say: A bus accident can derail one’s life and make moving forward difficult. But there are laws in place to protect you and your loved ones in the event that you are injured in a bus-related accident. Knowing them will help you recover the compensation you are entitled to.

To learn about these laws and your rights, please call Schwartzapfel Lawyers and speak with one of our well-qualified bus accident attorneys today. Dial 1-800-966-4999 now and allow us the honor and privilege of fighting and winning for you!

What To Do After a Bus Accident

No matter how you are affected by a bus accident, you should follow the same steps to ensure your safety and the safety of others.

Get Medical Help

In the immediate aftermath of a bus accident, your first priority should be to secure medical help for you and any other passengers or drivers. Call 911 if someone else hasn’t already done so and, without putting yourself in harm’s way, get yourself and those who are near you to safety.

This is important because, depending on the severity of the bus accident, a fire may start or other hazards may soon affect the situation. So, please, before worrying about legal liability and lawsuits, first and foremost take care of yourself and your health and safety.

Even if you don’t appear to be injured at first, make sure that you are checked out by a medical professional. In some cases, injuries won’t appear until later on and so it is all the more critical that you not wait until it is too late. Moreover, a prompt medical examination will ensure official documentation of any injuries, latent or otherwise.

Document the Scene

Once you have ensured that you are safe and out of harm’s way, try to document as much of the scene as possible. This may involve taking pictures or video of the accident site, personal injuries, and/or recording the contact information of any first responders and officers present, as well as the drivers involved, their passengers, and other potential witnesses.

Contact Legal Professionals

Once you’re safe and any pressing medical issues have been taken care of, you can and should contact a legal professional. Skilled bus accident lawyers should be able to assist in a variety of ways, ranging from helping you contact your insurance company to outlining your legal options, as well as suing responsible parties (e.g. the bus driver, bus company, etc.) on your behalf.

Moreover, as bus accident lawsuits are not as straightforward as typical auto accident lawsuits, you will want an expert at your side to guide you through what can be a complicated process. Depending on where liability is assigned, you may be unable to sue one party or another.

To learn more about liability assignment after a bus accident, statutes of limitation, and other factors involving bus accident lawsuits, call Schwartzapfel Lawyers at 1-800-966-4999 today.

Liability for Bus Accidents

Determining liability for a bus accident can be tricky. That’s because the buses in New York City are mostly owned by companies, not individuals. For example, local school buses are for the most part owned by New York City or individual school districts and NYC tour buses are in large part owned by tour companies, bus companies, or other corporate entities.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a bus accident in New York State, you could receive compensation from those who contributed to the accident. Potentially liable parties include but are not limited to:

  • Individual bus drivers. Most buses are common carriers, meaning that bus drivers have a heightened responsibility to drive safely for their passengers. If a bus driver is found to be at fault for an accident, they may be on the hook to cover your damages (e.g. medical/rehabilitation costs, loss of wages, pain and suffering, etc.).
  • Bus companies or other employers. Similarly, bus companies have a massive responsibility to hire and train qualified drivers. They must also maintain their buses regularly to ensure all equipment is functioning and meets industry standards. If a company is found liable for a bus accident, they could be responsible for your injuries or the injuries sustained by others.
  • Other drivers involved in the accident. When a third-party driver causes a bus accident, they may be liable for damages sustained by bus occupants or the bus company at large. By the same token, pedestrians, bicyclists, and/or any other parties that cause a bus accident in NYS may be found responsible and held liable for damages.
  • Bus manufacturers or component manufacturers. If a company sells a bus component (e.g. motor equipment, brake pads, tires, etc.) that malfunctions and, as a result, this leads to an accident, that company could be held responsible for damages.

Can You Get Compensation for Bus Accident Injuries?

Yes. Bus accident injuries can be severe and result in heavy medical expenses. As such, monetary compensation is often the best way of ensuring that the responsible party pay for:

  • Past and future medical bills
  • Loss of income if you had to take time off work due to your injuries
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of ability of your injuries resulted in paralysis or permanent disfigurement

To acquire the maximum compensation for your injuries, you will likely need a skilled bus accident lawyer on your side.

Why Bus Accident Lawyers Are Important

Bus accident lawyers are highly important if you plan to sue a bus company, bus driver, or any other party involved in a bus accident.

Legal professionals like the team here at Schwartzapfel Lawyers, P.C. can help you:

  • Gather the right evidence to prove your case, including getting eyewitness accounts, police reports, medical notes, and more
  • Advise you on who you should sue among the many potentially liable parties
  • Help you file your lawsuit and all relevant paperwork on time
  • Ensure that you present your case professionally and efficiently in court

In other words, bus accident lawyers can help you get as much monetary compensation for your injuries as possible. Given the high expenses of many medical treatments or surgeries, this is vital for anyone looking to move on after a bus accident.

Moving On From Bus Accidents

It can be challenging to move forward after a bus accidents. However, the right legal team can assist you with covering your medical bills and helping you secure your financial future.

That’s where Schwartzapfel Lawyers comes in. As experienced New York City bus accident attorneys, we have over 150 years of combined experience in handling auto accidents, bicycle accidents, and other accidents on the Big Apple’s busy streets. We know that bus accidents can be physically, mentally, and emotionally debilitating, which is why we will handle the legwork necessary to get your lawsuit off the ground and in the endzone.

Even better, we will work with you to secure the maximum compensation available to pay for your medical bills and any other accident-related expenses. With our help, you’ll be able to move on from the accident so that you can focus on what’s most important: getting better.

Don’t delay. Act now by calling us at 1-800-966-4999 for a free consultation. It won’t cost you a thing and may save you tomorrow.

Sources:

Schwartzapfel Lawyers, P.C. | Fighting For You

MTA buses were in more than 21K collisions in just 3 years | NY Post

Police Department City of New York Official Data | NYC.gov

Charter Bus Accident – Who Is Legally Responsible? | HG.org

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