An estimated 137 individuals every year pass away, and hundreds more suffer injuries in accidents involving school buses. However, tragedies occur occasionally, and those figures soar.
Every late commuter’s worst nightmare is following a school bus. Accidents still happen far too frequently, despite the fact that most drivers take extra precautions to stop completely, look out for children, and drive carefully.
The bus itself is the safest place to be in terms of bus safety. Furthermore, the three groups that make up 93% of the fatalities in these kinds of incidents each year are motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians.
What are the most common types of school bus-related crashes? How can we prevent these? Here are three examples of school bus accidents including the main participants: other drivers, school bus passengers, and non-passengers such as cyclists or pedestrians.
School Bus Accident Lawsuits
There is always a chance that students of school age could be injured in a school bus accident, regardless of all the precautions taken by school administrators, students, drivers, and parents to promote safety and prevent school transportation accidents. Parents might consider suing if the unthinkable happens, which makes sense. Although the aftermath of school bus crashes can be stressful and unpleasant, being aware of the procedures can assist speed up the process whether or not you decide to file a legal claim.
The primary consideration for insurance companies and legal counsel in every auto accident is fault, or who was at fault for the collision. There are numerous parties that could be at fault in school bus-related accidents, including the bus driver, the organization or institution that sponsors the bus, another driver, the bus manufacturer, or others. Identifying fault and demonstrating culpability is essential for maximizing your payout whether you are pursuing insurance claims or a case in connection with a school bus accident.
This procedure can be challenging, particularly when it directly affects the school system. Furthermore, restrictions on damages, which also apply to school districts and other governmental bodies, may have a significant negative effect on your legal rights. Because of this, whether their child has been struck by a school bus or involved in a traffic accident, many parents think about getting legal advice from a qualified bus accident lawyer.
The Most Common Types of School Bus Accidents
Here are the three types of school transportation-related accidents that increasingly lead to fatalities, injuries, and property damage.
School Bus Accidents Involving School Buses
In over three-fourths of all fatal school bus accidents, there are other motor vehicles involved. When compared to a typical family vehicle, a school bus is a large truck; therefore, it’s not surprising that accidents involving the two result in serious injuries.
School buses are generally on the road during morning and afternoon commutes, so people who are rushing or preoccupied may lack the patience and focus needed to deal with unusual circumstances. Typically, a 45 mph zone is now a 15 mph zone, or the bus in front might stop often to pick up kids.
In school bus traffic accidents, the other driver isn’t always at fault because the school bus driver is also capable of being careless. Whiplash, fractures, head injuries, broken bones, and even death are all possible injuries.
School Bus Accidents Involving Bus Passengers
One study indicated that as many as 17,000 injuries happen on school buses every year, which are used by more than 23 million children in the US daily. The majority of injuries are small scratches and bruises sustained while boarding and getting off the school bus or during roughhousing, while over 42% are caused by bus accidents.
Strains, sprains, head traumas, and abrasions are the most prevalent injuries among youth aged 11 to 14, accounting for over half of all injuries. Approximately 7% of school bus injuries end up in the death of a child passenger.
Pedestrian Accident Involving a School Bus
A moving school bus will strike and kill a cyclist or passenger in the US about once per month. Even those who escape with their lives could experience severe injuries, such as paralysis or fractured bones. When schools are in session, it is more crucial than ever to follow the traffic laws, whether you’re driving or not.
When crossing guards suddenly stop traffic, the streets soon swarm with people on foot. Given the restricted view that a huge bus offers, school bus drivers who aren’t paying attention or go through a red light could easily hit a bicycle or pedestrian.
Other Causes of Injuries on School Buses
Distracted driving and driving straight ahead into other vehicles are the most common causes of school bus-related fatalities.
A few other causes of these injuries include:
- Sudden stops and turns on the bus
- Slips and falls in the bus
- Horsing around
Most injuries, such as scrapes, cuts, fractured bones, and so on, won’t necessitate a lengthy hospital stay. Unfortunately, wrongful death also happens from time to time in these accidents. If this occurs, it is best to file a wrongful death claim and get an experienced attorney to represent you.
What to Do If your Children Get Injured on a School Bus
Any form of motor vehicle transportation has some degree of risk; however, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, school buses are the safest option for getting kids to and from school. They are made to be safer than standard cars or passenger vehicles and reduce injury rates.
However, if your child is hurt on a school bus, you do have alternatives, and you might be able to make a claim for compensation to pay for medical expenses and other expenditures. To analyze your case and determine whether you have a solid one, get in touch with a personal injury law firm, such as Ehline Law Firm.
Practice School Bus Safety to Avoid Accidents
Despite reported mishaps, students are quite safe when riding the school bus, according to the NHTSA. According to the organization, taking a school bus increases a child’s chance of arriving at school safely by 70 times compared to driving. Nevertheless, accidents do happen, and because of the weight and size of school buses, the results of accidents can be disastrous. School-age pedestrian events, such as a child being hit by a school bus, or school-age passenger occurrences, such as a child being inside a vehicle when it is impacted by a school bus, are some of the most frequent accidents involving school buses, according to the NHTSA.
Practice school bus safety to prevent accidents on school transportation vehicles.
Parents should instill in their kids a strong sense of caution around school buses by:
- Reducing distractions at bus stops, such as music, phones, books, and discussions with friends
- Being aware of your surroundings at bus stops
- Practicing safe street crossing methods around buses and other vehicles
- Recognizing unsafe conditions while on the bus and at bus stops
In addition, a crucial component of bus safety is driving cautiously around them. Parents ought to exercise caution around school buses by:
- Leaving sufficient spacing when stopping close to buses
- Watching children at crossings and bus stops when driving
- Adhering to all laws when driving in close proximity to buses
Children and the general public can contribute to reducing the frequency of school bus accidents and school bus injuries by taking these measures. Minor injuries, including lacerations, fractured bones, bruises, sprains, and strains, as well as more serious ones such as internal bleeding, spinal cord injuries, brain trauma, and even death, are some of the most frequent injuries caused by school bus accidents.
Contact Ehline Law Firm Today for a Free Consultation!
At Ehline Law Firm, we want every client to be aware of their alternatives and take advantage of our attorney-client relationship and all the tools at our disposal to safeguard their interests. Our free, no-obligation consultation will help you learn about your alternatives and arm you with crucial knowledge that you can use to make the best choice for your requirements.
When handling insurance claims or legal proceedings, Ehline Law Firm wants victims of school transportation-related crashes and their families to feel assured and confident. With years of experience and a variety of resources, we provide value to our clients. When it comes to school bus accident fatalities and injuries, Ehline Law Firm is your go-to legal office.