East Ridge Bus Accident Lawyer

Many East Ridge residents use public transportation to commute to work, get around town, or save money on transportation. While buses are usually very safe, crashes do still happen. The sheer size and weight of a bus carrying many more occupants than another vehicle could make a bus accident more disastrous.

If you are injured in a public transportation or school bus collision, an East Ridge bus accident lawyer could discuss your legal rights, including the right to financial compensation from parties at fault for the accident. Reach out to us today to speak with a dedicated personal injury attorney who could guide you through the legal process.

Some Causes of Bus Accidents in East Ridge

Buses do not have safety features common in cars such as seat belts or airbags, although they are generally safer than cars because of their size. Some common causes of bus accidents include:

  • An impaired driver
  • A driver in a hurry who rushes a boarding or disembarking passenger, causing them to fall or be caught in the door
  • A driver suffering from fatigue
  • A distracted driver who is texting, eating, or drinking

An East Ridge attorney familiar with accident claims involving buses can help determine if the bus driver’s actions qualify as negligent.

Negligence in Collisions with Privately Owned Buses

Although government-owned municipal and school buses in East Ridge transport people locally, travelers also travel across the country in privately owned interstate carriers. Other private passenger vehicles include shuttle, church, and charter sightseeing buses. Riders who are injured in a private bus crash may recover damages by filing a personal injury lawsuit based on a claim of negligence.

Proving a Claim of Negligence in a Bus Crash

To prove negligence, injured parties must show that the bus driver or owner acted carelessly enough to cause the crash, and injuries occurred. The collision must be the actual and proximate cause of the damages to the parties bringing the lawsuit. An example of an actual cause is a bus driver who crashes into a car, causing the accident and injuring the car’s driver. Proximate cause is the cause the law recognizes, an action that produces foreseeable injuries. The bus driver who crashes into the car and injures the driver is also the proximate cause of the accident. The bus driver who crashes into a vehicle is not the proximate cause of injuries to a bystander who trips on the sidewalk and breaks an arm trying to get a better view of the bus accident. An East Ridge personal injury attorney, with knowledge of bus crash cases, could review facts and determine if negligence is at play.

Negligence in Collisions with Hamilton County Buses in East Ridge

The Hamilton County School District is responsible for transporting more than 20,000 children safely to and from school each day. Municipal buses fall under the auspices of the Chattanooga Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA). Both are government entities. If an accident occurs, the rules for filing a negligence lawsuit are different because Tennessee offers tort immunity to government employees. Tort immunity laws in Tennessee do allow negligence actions in some instances, such as for the negligent operation of motor vehicles. Because the procedure is complicated, it is best to consult a Tennessee bus accident attorney if an injury is caused while riding a government-owned bus.

Hamilton County School District’s Rules for School Bus Drivers

Although the Hamilton County School District has discussed mandatory seat belts for school buses, this has not been implemented. But the district has strengthened its requirements for drivers. Applicants must be at least 25 years old and have completed a safe driver program. They also must have at least five consecutive years of related driving experience. District and charter schools must hire transportation supervisors. An East Ridge attorney handling a school bus accident could make sure the district is complying with Tennessee laws.

Get Help from an East Ridge Bus Accident Lawyer

An experienced East Ridge bus accident lawyer knows Tennessee laws are nuanced depending on whether a client is injured in an accident involving a large, interstate common carrier, a municipality, a school district, a church, or private, chartered transportation. We could help you get the compensation you deserve, call our bus accident lawyers today for a free consultation.