Denver, CO, Bus Accidents Lawyers Protecting the Interests of the Injured
Every day, thousands of people in Denver and across Colorado use buses to reach their destinations. From children hopping on school buses to workers commuting to their jobs using public transportation to sightseers on tour buses, many individuals trust that their bus driver will keep them safe on their trip. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. Sometimes bus drivers are negligent and cause crashes or rollovers that can cause serious injuries for many passengers at once. Other times, a third-party driver acted negligently, and the bus driver could not evade the accident, despite their training.
Whatever the cause of the bus accident, it can be a frightening and devastating event for the passengers involved. Due to the mass of the vehicle and the lack of safety equipment installed in most buses, a bus accident can leave victims hurt and reeling. A Denver bus accident lawyer from Genco Injury Attorneys understands the complexities of filing a personal injury claim for an accident involving a bus. Our Colorado bus accident lawyers can inform you of your rights and options for filing bus accident claims. We will fight to ensure all responsible parties are held liable for your Denver bus accident to get you the compensation you are entitled to. Call today to schedule a free consultation with one of our skilled Denver bus accident lawyers.
Why Do Bus Accidents Happen?
Bus drivers are highly skilled professionals. They carry a CDL and usually have specific training on how to handle a bus to keep their passengers safe. However, like any driver, they are human and can make mistakes. Sadly, when a bus driver acts negligently, their actions can impact a large number of individuals. While driver negligence is a common cause of bus accidents, there are times when the driver is not at fault. Determining the origins of a bus accident and who is at fault may be challenging because of all the factors involved, but understanding what led up to the crash helps those investigating decide who is liable. Some common causes of bus accidents include:
- Driver negligence, including but not limited to:
- Driving under the influence
- Driving recklessly
- Not leaving enough space between vehicles
- Driving while fatigued
- Improper maintenance of buses
- Faulty or defective bus parts
- Buses that are poorly designed
- Negligence on the part of other drivers on the road
- Bad weather conditions
- Intersections, roundabouts, and other road features which were not appropriately designed for use by buses
What Injuries Can Be Caused by a Bus Accident?
Bus accident victims suffer many of the same injuries as those hurt in a car accident. What makes bus accidents more dangerous is the lack of safety equipment, such as seat belts and airbags, to cushion the impact of a crash. On mass transportation, some individuals have to spend their trip standing due to the crowded nature of the buses. Even an abrupt stop or tight turn by a driver could cause them to fall and get injured. Buses are also notorious for rolling over in crashes, causing significant injuries for many accident victims. Injuries that can result from a bus accident are:
- Soft tissue damage
- Broken bones
- Back and neck injuries
- Crush injuries
- Head trauma
- Cuts and bruises
- Severed limbs
- Damage to internal organs
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
If the injuries are severe enough, death may result from the accident. Survivors may face a long road to recovery. Even when they’ve healed from the physical damage, the trauma of a bus accident may leave them with mental and emotional difficulties, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, and nightmares. These symptoms are especially prevalent in those who experienced a TBI during the crash. These victims may also struggle with communication issues, mood swings, personality changes, seizures, memory problems, and other aftereffects that can significantly impact their quality of life.
Who Could Be Held Liable for a Bus Accident?
After a bus accident, it can be challenging to determine where to file your personal injury claim because there are often many individuals and entities involved. The ultimate answer for who is liable for your damages will vary based on the unique circumstances of your case. Sometimes multiple individuals may share culpability for the accident. Even in cases where the crash was mainly caused by factors outside of the driver’s control, such as bad weather or poorly maintained roads, the driver may have contributed to the accident through negligent actions and worsened the outcome of the crash. The parties who may be found entirely or partially liable for Colorado bus accidents include:
- The bus driver
- The bus company or bus driver’s employer
- The government agency or municipality that runs the mass transit system
- The bus manufacturer or designer, if manufacturing or design defects caused or contributed to the crash
- Third-party drivers involved in the accident, if their negligence caused the bus accident
- Bus maintenance providers
To have your case heard in court, you must file your claim against the liable parties within the statute of limitations. In Colorado, you generally have three years to file your bus accident claim. This may seem like a long time, but building a strong case takes time, and you want to be sure that you will fall within the time frame so you do not miss your chance to recover compensation for your injuries. The time available for you to file is also significantly shorter if a government agency is a defendant. You may only have a few months in these situations. So it is crucial to enlist the help of a Denver bus accident attorney as soon as possible to ensure that your rights are protected and that you understand all of your legal options and deadlines.
What is a Common Carrier Law?
A personal injury claim for a bus accident is somewhat different from a regular car accident claim because of the impact of common carrier laws. A common carrier is an entity that charges a fee to move goods or people from one place to another. Anyone is free to use a common carrier as long as they pay the fee. Because it is the business of a common carrier, such as a city bus, to transport individuals to a destination safely, they are bound by law to owe their customers a higher duty of care. This goes beyond the usual negligence doctrine applied to personal injury cases.
So what does this mean for your case? To have a successful claim, you still must prove that the bus operator and/or driver owed you a duty of care and that they breached that duty, thereby directly causing your injuries. However, because of common carrier laws, it may be easier to prove negligence on the part of the bus driver or bus company. Because they owe every passenger the utmost care, instead of just reasonable care, their actions may be found negligent in situations where a regular driver’s actions would not. A knowledgeable Denver bus accident attorney can explain in more detail how common carrier laws may apply to your individual case.
How Can a Bus Accident Attorney Assist You?
If you or a family member have been injured in a bus accident, you know the difficulties of trying to recover compensation for your injuries. Insurance companies are not very sympathetic to the fact that you have ongoing pain and large medical bills from the bus crash that are causing you stress. They are for-profit businesses that are mainly interested in paying as little as possible for your claim. They are quick to deny your damages and attempt to shift fault for the accident onto others.
The proficient Denver bus accident attorneys at Genco Injury Attorneys are here to help you get the compensation you deserve. We know how to determine who may be liable in your specific case so they can efficiently file the necessary claims and begin the negotiation process to get the maximum compensation for your damages. While most claims can be settled outside of court, if it becomes necessary to take the case to trial, we will not hesitate. Contact our offices today for a free consultation with a bus accident lawyer: 303-500-1376.