When you are injured during a bus accident in Pennsylvania, it is hard to determine what you should do afterward. Before you can take any action, it is important to have a local Pennsylvania bus accident lawyer investigate the crash to ascertain who is responsible for the accident. Depending on the specific circumstances surrounding the event, the responsible party may vary.
The Bus Company
The party responsible for your injuries is actually the bus company, not the driver of another vehicle. When you get onto a bus, the company is taking responsibility for your safety.
An accident on a bus can cause a wide range of injuries to passengers. Depending on the injuries that you sustain, the amount of compensation and the options that are available to help you through difficult times may vary.
The company is always held responsible for your injuries and the injuries to other passengers when the cause of the accident is directly related to the bus. For example, if the bus has faulty brakes or other defects that directly result in an accident, then the company will be responsible. Working with a Pennsylvania bus accident attorney can help you get the financial compensation to which you are entitled, such as pain and suffering money.
A bus driver may be held responsible for your injuries if he or she violated traffic laws or otherwise took unnecessary risks that resulted in an accident.
Even though the driver is responsible for the accident, the bus company will be responsible for negligent hiring and training. The bus company typically has millions in liability insurance to cover injuries to the passengers.
School Districts or the Local Government
When you or a loved one are injured in an accident while you are on a government bus or a school bus, the school district or the local government that hired the bus driver and run the bus line can be held responsible. Claims against cities and local governments require notice to be given, which is typically short, such as 90 days. If you fail to give notice, your claim can be barred.
In some cases, the accident is not related to the bus company or the driver. Faulty engineering, damaged parts or similar situations may be the result of the manufacturer.
If an investigation discovers that the bus was defective due to the manufacturer's mistake, then tour bus accident attorneys will go after the manufacturer of the vehicle. The manufacturer will usually have a very deep pocket to pay for your injuries and the injuries of other passengers when their product is faulty.
Before you can take action to receive compensation after a bus accident, you must first find out who caused the accident. It will not help if you try to obtain compensation from the wrong party because their insurance may not be willing to pay, and even if they did, you would only get a tiny nuisance settlement without a lawyer.