It goes without saying that a bus is a large vehicle that can cause catastrophic damage in a collision. When a bus is part of an accident, though, it might not be immediately clear who is actually responsible for the damages.
While most accidents stem from the negligence of one or more drivers, commercial vehicles like buses also have entire companies behind them that must see to the safety of the equipment they send out on the road. Knowing how to determine who exactly is at fault in a bus accident will help you secure the compensation you need after sustaining an injury in a crash.
When is the bus driver at fault?
Bus drivers have an obligation to follow safe driving practices and adhere to safety regulations enforced by their employers. Failure to do so is an act of negligence for which the driver is at fault if an accident occurs. Behaviors such as driving on poor roads outside the assigned route, driving under the influence or violating traffic laws are all negligent acts.
When is a third party at fault?
The bus company and its partners are responsible for maintaining its vehicle as well as the parts and equipment within. The company also has the obligation to properly train its drivers and enforce safety policies. An accident resulting from poor maintenance or personnel management is partially or entirely the fault of the bus company.
The National Safety Council reports that school bus crashes typically result in over 10,000 injuries annually, to say nothing of commercial bus crashes. If you experience an injury due to a bus accident, you have the right to pursue the compensation necessary for affording your medical treatment.