San Antonio Bus Accident Attorneys
Advocates For Bus Accident Victims
Were you injured in a bus accident? Since 1990, Wyatt Law Firm’s team of bus accident lawyers has been advocating for victims of negligence. Sadly, most bus accidents are avoidable. When drivers and others do not exercise care and caution, people can get hurt.
Wyatt Law Firm can help individuals who were:
- Injured while riding on VIA Metropolitan Transit
- Hit by a bus as a pedestrian
- Hit by a bus while riding in a passenger vehicle
- Injured in a school bus accident
- Injured in an accident involving a charter bus
- Have lost loved ones to a fatal bus accident
If you or a loved one has been affected by a bus accident, we invite you to contact a bus accident attorney at Wyatt Law Firm. Call us at 210-340-5550 or fill out a free case evaluation form to learn more.
Wyatt Law Firm provides aggressive representation for people throughout Texas and the nation, including the cities of San Antonio, Dallas, Houston, Austin, Laredo and Corpus Christi.
Types of Damages To Pursue and Recover in a San Antonio Bus Accident Case
If you sustained injuries in a San Antonio bus accident, you might recover various types of damages. The amount of damages for which you may be eligible typically depends on the severity of your injuries from the bus accident, the cost of your medical treatment, and various other factors. First of all, you may recover economic compensation for all of your medical bills, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses.
In addition, you might be eligible to pursue compensation for all of your inconvenience, pain and suffering, loss of use of a body part, mental anguish, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
The knowledgeable San Antonio bus accident lawyers at the Wyatt Law Firm can determine which types of damages you might be eligible to receive. Our team will then advocate for your legal interests and help you pursue compensation to make you whole again following your bus accident.
Causes Of Public Transportation Accidents
Each bus accident case is unique and should be evaluated by an experienced personal injury attorney in conjunction with accident investigators. Any given bus accident could involve multiple factors that led to the accident, but some of the common causes include:
Poor Bus Maintenance
If buses are not properly maintained or fail to meet safety regulations, it can lead to serious accidents or more severe injuries in the event of an accident. In this case, the bus manufacturer or the entity that owns the buses could be held liable.
Many bus accidents are caused by drivers who simply are not paying attention. Speeding, failure to yield, and other acts of negligence often contribute to traffic injuries and fatalities.
Bus companies that hire underqualified or unlicensed drivers could be held accountable for any accidents caused as a result. Bus companies should only hire drivers with a proper driver’s license and clean driving history.
VIA Metropolitan Transit Accident
The VIA Metropolitan Transit is a mass transportation agency that serves the people of San Antonio. Established in 1977, the VIA Metropolitan Transit helps commuters get to where they need to go. According to the VIA organization, an average of 43.6 million riders use the public transit every year. Because of the number of people and the need for transit, it is not uncommon to see VIA Metropolitan Transit buses zooming through the streets in San Antonio.
With the numbers of riders onboard, bus drivers have a responsibility to drive cautiously and to take all safety precautions. You, as a passenger, expect drivers to have gone through the extensive training needed to operate such large vehicles. You also expect them to be familiar with traffic laws. Unfortunately, buses are sometimes involved in accidents that lead to serious injuries or even death.
In 2013, a San Antonio woman filed a lawsuit against VIA Metro claiming that she had lost the use of her legs after being run over by a city bus in a crosswalk. Her medical expenses cost her thousands of dollars. In 2014, a San Antonio news source reported that VIA Metro was not proactively cooperating in a lawsuit filed by a man who was hit by a distracted VIA bus driver.
Causes Of VIA Metropolitan Transit Accidents
Sometimes, city bus systems ail to take adequate precautions. There are multiple reasons for why bus accidents happen.
But some of the more common causes of public transit bus accidents include:
- Distracted driving – This is one of the leading causes of bus accidents. Bus drivers are responsible not only for the safety of their passengers but also for the safety of occupants in surrounding vehicles. When bus drivers do not pay attention, they risk many lives.
- Fatigued driving – Driving tired is almost as bad as driving distracted. With the number of people riding the bus daily, drivers often end up working long hours. When they do not get enough rest, however, their driving is impaired. Driving while fatigued leads to inattention behind the wheel, resulting in accidents that could have been prevented.
- Improperly maintained buses – There are times when the driver is not at fault. If a bus is not taken care of properly, it can malfunction, thus leading to accidents. It is the job of the transit company to provide properly working vehicles.
- Unqualified drivers – There are certain requirements a driver must meet in order to operate a VIA Metropolitan Transit bus. Some companies hire individuals without checking to see if they have the proper qualifications or without providing necessary training. They can be held accountable if an unqualified driver gets in an accident with someone else.
San Antonio Bus Accident FAQs
Both residents and visitors to San Antonio rely on bus transportation to get them into and around the city. Buses operate on San Antonio roadways and highways daily. These buses include city buses, charter buses, and school buses. Whenever a bus driver negligently operates their bus, serious accidents can happen, leaving the occupants of the bus or another vehicle severely injured and debilitated.
Individuals who have suffered injuries in San Antonio bus accidents often have many questions about how to pursue legal action and recover monetary compensation for their injuries. Fortunately, the experienced team of attorneys at the Wyatt Law Firm is here to help you and answer all of your questions.
Below are some answers to some of the most common questions that bus accident victims have when filing a personal injury claim. To discuss your situation and your legal options, please contact our law firm directly for more information.
What Types of Buses Are Typically in Serious Accidents in and Around San Antonio?
A bus accident can involve any bus that is operating in the San Antonio area. Buses that operate on San Antonio roadways include city buses, charter buses, company buses, and school buses. Bus accidents can injure not only the individuals who are riding on the bus but also the driver and occupants of other motor vehicles in the collision. When a large bus collides with a much smaller vehicle, it is typically the occupants of the smaller vehicle who suffer the most serious injuries in the accident.
If you suffered injuries in a bus accident in the San Antonio area, your first step should be to speak with a knowledgeable and experienced San Antonio bus accident lawyer at the Wyatt Law Firm. Our legal team can discuss the circumstances of your accident with you and explain your legal options for moving forward with your case.
How Do Bus Accidents Occur in San Antonio?
There are several ways that bus accidents can happen in and around San Antonio. In many instances, these accidents occur because of driver error and negligence. Professional bus drivers must abide by a higher standard of care than ordinary drivers simply because of their experience and training. A bus driver is subject to the standard of care of a hypothetical ‘reasonable’ bus driver operating a bus under the same or similar circumstances.
When a bus driver violates this standard of care by acting unreasonably, an accident happens, and injuries result, the bus driver or the employer bus company can be liable.
Some common types of bus driver negligence that can lead to serious accidents and injuries include:
- Negligent bus operation – When operating a bus on San Antonio highways and roadways, bus drivers must operate their vehicles in a reasonable, careful, and safe manner at all times. Part of this duty includes following all traffic signs and signals and obeying all traffic laws. When a bus driver breaks the law while operating a bus on the road, a serious accident can happen. Bus drivers violate their duty of care to their passengers and other drivers when they run stop signs or red traffic lights, tailgate other vehicles on the roadway, weave in and out of traffic (especially without using a turn signal), and speed. Any of these activities can lead to an accident that ends up injuring a bus passenger, another driver, another vehicle’s passenger, pedestrian, or someone else.
- Intoxicated driving – Alcohol intoxication can have a profound impact on a person’s driving abilities. When a driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the driver’s vision and perception can become distorted. Moreover, alcohol can cause the driver’s reaction time to become delayed, leading to a collision with another vehicle or even with a stationary object on or near the road.
- Distracted bus operation – Using a cell phone or paying attention to another electronic device while trying to operate a bus do not go hand in hand. Even if a bus driver diverts their attention away from the roadway for a second or two, that is sufficient time for an accident between a bus and another vehicle or a pedestrian to occur. Bus drivers are responsible for giving proper care and attention to the roadway at all times, and this includes refraining from using cellular phones, tablets, and other electronic devices at all times while operating the bus. Even a moment of distracted driving for a bus driver can spell disaster for anyone on the bus or in the vicinity.
- Fatigued bus drivers – Some bus drivers might work long hours or even multiple jobs, and this can lead to drowsy driving of a large commercial vehicle. Drowsy driving can be as dangerous as intoxicated driving in many situations, and serious crashes can result.
- A negligent driver of another vehicle – In some instances, bus accidents occur not because of negligence on the part of the bus operator but rather because of another motor vehicle operator’s carelessness and negligence. For example, the other driver might have been speeding, weaving in and out of traffic, or otherwise violating one or more rules of the road, bringing about a serious collision in the process.
Who Causes San Antonio Bus Accidents?
You may hold several individuals and entities responsible for a bus accident in or around San Antonio. First of all, the negligent bus driver who caused the accident can be liable for the injuries and damages that result. In addition, if the bus driver works for a bus company or some other entity, that entity can share in some or all of the responsibility.
For example, bus companies are responsible for ensuring that they hire and retain quality drivers. They are also responsible for properly supervising those drivers. In addition, they should not retain problem drivers or individuals who have a habit of causing bus accidents or receiving driving citations.
In some instances where an employment relationship exists, the bus company can automatically be responsible for a bus driver’s negligence. In addition, if the accident victim can demonstrate that the bus accident happened because a bus company negligently hired, retained, or failed to supervise the problem bus driver, the bus company can also be on the line for negligence.
In some instances, the owner of a bus that is involved in an accident is the City of San Antonio or some other municipality. It is important to keep in mind that you must most likely meet notice requirements before filing a claim or lawsuit against a municipality. If you fail to follow these notice requirements and go ahead and file a lawsuit, the court will likely dismiss your case.
If a bus accident that a negligent driver caused left you injured, the San Antonio bus accident attorneys at the Wyatt Law Firm are ready to represent you in your case. Our legal team can help you determine which individuals or entities were responsible for your accident and can file the necessary claim or lawsuit in the Texas state court system. Our goal is to help you pursue and recover the maximum amount of compensation possible for your injuries.
What Types of Injuries Do Victims of San Antonio Bus Accidents Typically Suffer?
Passengers who are on a bus that is involved in an accident can suffer extremely serious injuries. Most buses do not come with seat belts. Consequently, when a bus is involved in an accident, the passenger’s body can move forward and backward very quickly. A part of the passenger’s body can also strike something in the vehicle, like the headrest, window, or seat in front.
Similarly, if a bus driver’s negligence results in a collision with a smaller vehicle, the occupants of the smaller vehicle typically suffer more serious injuries. The force of the impact can cause the accident victim’s body to move around inside the vehicle, resulting in one or more serious injuries.
Injuries suffered by bus accident victims often include traumatic head injuries, soft tissue injuries, bone fractures, back injuries, spinal cord injuries, and even death in the worst accident cases. Many of these injuries require hospitalization and follow-up medical treatment.
For example, the accident victim might need to follow up with a primary care doctor, medical specialist (such as an orthopedist), or physical therapy facility. The accident victim might also need to undergo one or more medical procedures, such as an injection or surgery, at some point down the road. All of this related medical treatment may be compensable as part of the accident victim’s bus accident case.
If you or a person you love has suffered one or more of these injuries in a San Antonio bus accident, the experienced bus accident attorneys at The Wyatt Law Firm can help. Our legal team can analyze the facts and circumstances of your case and determine what, if any, damages you might be eligible to pursue. Our lawyers will zealously advocate for your rights and help you perceive the highest amount of monetary compensation available for your bus accident injuries.
How Do I Go About Filing a Claim for Injuries Arising From a San Antonio Bus Accident?
If you suffered injuries in a bus accident, you may file a claim against the bus driver or the bus company, and their insurer. First, your attorney will gather all of your medical records, bills, and other documentation and submit it to the insurance company for review. The adjuster handling the claim will evaluate the settlement demand package prepared by your attorney, and if liability is accepted, may make an offer to resolve the case.
Initial settlement offers from insurance companies are typically very low and do not adequately compensate accident victims for all of their injuries and losses, especially for serious injuries. After several rounds of negotiation between the insurance company and the accident victim’s lawyer, the case may come to a resolution for a favorable amount of money.
If the bus driver or bus company’s insurer refuses to offer full and fair compensation for all of your injuries, then you have the option of filing a lawsuit and litigating the case in the Texas state court system. Throughout the litigation process, the case may still settle at any point. However, the accident victim might elect to take the case to a jury trial, in which instance the jury will decide all of the disputed issues in the case. One of these disputed issues is usually the amount of compensation that the accident victim can recover in their case.
If you suffered injuries in a San Antonio bus accident, the knowledgeable legal team at the Wyatt Law Firm can help you decide whether you should accept a pending settlement offer or roll the dice and take your case to a jury trial. If you decide to litigate your case and take it to trial, arbitration, or mediation, our experienced legal team can advocate for your interests and help you pursue compensation for your injuries.
Contact Wyatt Law Firm For A Free Consultation
If you or someone you love was injured in a bus accident, we invite you to contact Wyatt Law Firm. If you would like us to review your case for free, call us today or fill out our convenient online form.
Wyatt Law Firm does not charge its clients unless we secure a financial recovery on their behalf. No recovery? No fee! Call to learn more.
If you or a loved one has been affected by a bus accident, we invite you to contact a San Antonio bus accident attorney at Wyatt Law Firm. Call us at 210-340-5550 or fill out a free case evaluation form to learn more.
Wyatt Law Firm, PLLC
21 Lynn Batts Lane, Suite 10
San Antonio, Texas 78218