Buses are a vital mode of transportation for many people in Maryland, and numerous agencies in the state are responsible for providing public bus services. Buses are considered common carriers, which means that they are required to exercise the highest degree of care when it comes to the safety of their passengers.
A bus accident has the potential to not only cause injuries for passengers but also other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. Some bus crashes will prompt investigations by governmental agencies, but in far more instances, accident victims are left in the dark when it comes to the legal recourse they may have. Those who suffer severe injuries, can incur costly medical bills, lose significant amounts of money in the form of lost wages, and could struggle financially in the aftermath of the crash.
Fortunately, the Maryland bus accident attorneys of CHASENBOSCOLO have extensive experience helping accident victims seek and receive justice when they’ve been hurt in a crash. We will not hesitate to hold the driver, the bus company, and any other responsible entity accountable when a bus crash injures you. We know how to win, and we’ve recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for thousands of clients. Call (301) 220-0050 or contact us online to receive a free consultation.
Do I Need A Bus Accident Lawyer?
While a state or federal agency may trigger an investigation, such investigations can take several months or even years to complete. You are going to want answers much sooner, and an attorney will be able to provide them.
A lawyer can immediately commence an independent investigation of your entire crash scene, determine the cause, and preserve important evidence. They will also be able to determine all of the liable parties, as there could be multiple defendants in a civil action.
Any negligent party involved in a bus crash is going to act quickly to try and minimize the potential payout to victims. Many insurance companies are going to immediately offer you a lump sum settlement to resolve your case and prevent legal action, but the proposed settlements often fall woefully short of what victims will actually need for the full lifetime of care.
A lawyer is going to be able to review all of the circumstances applicable to your case and then gauge the true value of your claim. The attorney can then work to recover that amount or as close as possible to it by negotiating with the insurance company on your behalf.
Why Choose CHASENBOSCOLO To Handle My Case?
CHASENBOSCOLO has three Maryland offices in Greenbelt, Waldorf, and Hyattsville. Our firm has been helping all kinds of injury victims since 1986.
Barry M. Chasen has more than 30 years of legal experience and has received an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell. He is a is also a past chair of the Maryland State Bar Section on Negligence, Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation who is also a member of the Maryland State Bar Association, American Association for Justice, and Maryland Association for Justice.
Benjamin T. Boscolo has also received an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell. He is also a member of the American Association for Justice, Maryland Association for Justice, and Maryland State Bar Section Council on Negligence, Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation.
You will also get the No Fee Guarantee® when you work with CHASENBOSCOLO, so you pay nothing without a monetary award. We will be determined to get you a just settlement, but we will prepare your case for trial and take it to court if an insurance company does not make a satisfactory offer.
Types of Bus Accident Cases We Handle
Our firm is familiar with bus accidents involving many different kinds of agencies in Maryland. Some of the most common kinds of bus accidents involve:
- Allegany County Transit (ACT) Alltrans
- Annapolis Transit
- Bethesda Transportation Solutions (BTS)
- Calvert County Department of Transportation (CCDOT)
- Carroll Transit System (CTS)
- County Ride
- DASH Bus
- Delmarva Community Services, Inc.
- Dillon’s Bus Service
- Eyre Bus
- Garrett Transit Service
- Harford County Transportation Services (HCTS)
- Howard Commuter Solutions(HCS)
- Keller Transportation, Inc.
- Lux Bus
- Maryland Transit Administration (MTA)
- Maryland Upper Shore Transit (MUST)
- Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT)
- Peter Pan Bus Lines
- Potomac Valley Transit Authority (PVTA)
- Regional Transportation Agency (RTA) of Central Maryland
- Shore Transit
- St. Mary’s Transit System (STS)
- TheBus (Prince George’s County)
Bus crashes can often lead to devastating injuries. Many victims are out of work for several weeks, months, or even years, and medical bills continue to accumulate all during this time.
Types of injuries bus accident victims may suffer can include, but are not limited to:
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Neck Injuries
- Burn Injuries
- Soft Tissue Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
- Nerve Damage
- Head Injuries
- Internal Organ Damage
Some bus accident injuries end up being fatal, and a person’s death can cause significant challenges for the family left behind. Family members may be able to file wrongful death lawsuits in these cases.
The causes of bus accidents can vary. Some crashes are the result of driver behaviors such as unsafe lane changes, distracted driving, or even driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs. Other causes that are beyond the control of drivers could be brake failure or some other vehicle malfunction, inclement weather, or possibly another driver.
What should I do if I am involved in a bus accident?
After your accident, always be sure that you get medical care. If your accident occurs in an isolated incident while you are a passenger on a bus, try to go to a hospital as soon as you can get off the bus. Try to take pictures of the scene of your accident when it is possible. Following crashes, get photographs of the people and vehicles involved as well as other notable factors. Also look for any people in the area who may have seen the accident, as these could be potential witnesses. Make sure that the first person you talk to about your accident is a lawyer and not an insurance company.
How long do I have to file a bus accident claim?
Under Maryland Courts and Judicial Proceedings Code § 5–101, a civil action has to be filed within three years of the date of an accident. The statute of limitations is also three years for wrongful death claims, but the limitations period will begin on the date of a person’s death instead of the date of the accident they were involved in. A minor who is injured in a bus accident will have three years from the date they turn 18 years of age and a person who is incompetent (such as in a coma) will have their limitations period tolled (delayed) until they are competent.
Who can be held liable in a bus accident?
Numerous parties could bear responsibility for a bus crash. There is always the bus driver and the bus company, but other liable parties in some cases could include maintenance companies, parts manufacturers, or possibly other drivers who may have been at fault for accidents.
Maryland Bus Accident Statistics
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that there were six bus fatalities in Maryland in 2016. There were no bus fatalities in 2013, 2014, 2015, or 2017.
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), there were 95 deaths in school bus-related crashes in 2017, the lowest total of any year in the period dating back to 2007. The deaths included 70 occupants of other vehicles, 10 pedestrians, four school bus passengers, eight school bus drivers, two bicyclists, and one other non-occupant.
The NSC reported that there were 12,000 injuries in school bus-related crashes in 2017, which was the lowest total since the 9,000 injuries in 2012. Injuries included 7,000 occupants of other vehicles, 3,000 school bus passengers, 1,000 school bus drivers, 1,000 pedestrians, fewer than 500 bicyclists, and fewer than 500 other non-occupants.
A University of Michigan study found that Maryland had an annual average fatal bus involvement of 2.0 for school buses, 0.4 for over-the-road (intercity) buses, 4.0 for transit (intracity) buses, 0.6 for other buses, and 0.8 for unknown buses with a total annual average fatal bus involvement rate of 7.8.
The 2017 Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts (LTBCF) from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reported that intercity buses accounted for 13 percent, school buses accounted for 40 percent, and transit buses accounted 35 percent of all buses involved in fatal crashes, on average, from 2007 to 2017. The 73 school buses and 13 intercity buses involved in fatal crashes in 2017 were the lowest numbers recorded since the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) began in 1975.
According to the 2017 LTBCF, there were 17 bus occupants killed in crashes in 2017. This was less than the 18 such fatalities in each 2016 and 2015, but more than every prior year going back to 1989, when there were 28 bus fatalities.
The 2017 LTBCF reported that there were 229 fatal crashes involving buses in 2017 and 232 buses involved in fatal crashes. The 44 bus occupant fatalities led to a total of 274 fatalities.
Contact a Bus Accident Attorney in Maryland
If you sustained catastrophic injuries or your loved one was killed in a bus crash in Maryland, do not think that you have been forgotten. Your rights are important and CHASENBOSCOLO will fight to protect them.
Our Maryland personal injury lawyers will work tirelessly to help you recover every dollar of compensation you are entitled to. We can help you understand all of your legal options when you call (301) 220-0050 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.