When a Bus Ride to School Turns Catastrophic
The school bus is supposed to be an easy, safe way to send your child off to their school for the day. But sometimes, that trusted mode of transportation ends in horror. It’s a question no parent wants to ask, but what should you do if your child was injured while on the school bus?
What Causes School Buses to Crash?
The most common cause of school bus accidents is the driver becoming distracted. Given that the average school bus transports dozens of children, it’s no wonder the bus driver can become easily distractible. From throwing objects to running up and down the aisle to yelling, children can be a handful, especially if there are sixty of them contained in one vehicle.
It’s important to teach your child about school bus safety. The calmer and better behaved the children, the less likely the driver is to become distracted. Children should always remain in their seats, keeping their voices to a low volume and their hands to themselves. If they notice the bus driver has lost control of the bus, they should brace themselves against the seat in front of them.
Who is Responsible in an Accident?
There are several potentially liable parties in a school bus accident. The first would be the bus driver. If they did not act responsibly and drive as safely as any reasonable person would, then they may be found at fault for the accident. While it is easy for a driver to become distracted by the children they’re driving, they still have a duty to keep those children safe and keep control of their bus.
It is also possible the school and school district can be held liable. If a bus is owned by the school district, then they are responsible for its maintenance and upkeep. They are also responsible for the hiring of the drivers. If the bus crashed due to improper maintenance, or if the school hired someone known to be an irresponsible driver, then they may be found to be at fault.
If the bus is owned by a third-party company and only rented by the school, then that company could be held liable. Like with the school district, the company would be responsible for all maintenance and for hiring safe drivers.
What Steps Should You Take in the Case of a School Bus Crash?
You should always make sure your child is safe before anything else. All parents know this, of course, but a reminder can never hurt. Once your child has been treated by medical professionals, you should hire an experienced bus accident attorney. Your children are precious, and schools have a responsibility to keep them safe. If they failed that duty, then they should be held responsible.
We at The Lenahan Law Firm have a long history of representing those severely injured in vehicle accidents. If you or your child were seriously injured by a school bus, contact us at (214) 295-1008 and find out if we’re the right law firm for you. Our clients don’t owe us a penny until we’ve settled their case.