When you are injured in a motor vehicle accident, the typical course of action involves seeking reimbursement from insurance companies for covered losses, as well as a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages. The action in court tends to be pretty straightforward. Your lawyer will identify and name as defendants all potentially responsible parties, including the other driver, the manufacturer of the vehicle (if the accident was caused by a vehicle defect), or even the person who served the other driver alcoholic beverages, if you were injured by a drunk driver.
However, when you are hurt in a public transportation accident—on a bus, a light rail, subway car or commuter train—everything changes. This is because you must now file a claim against a governmental entity. Governmental bodies don’t have the same liability as individuals. When you file a claim against a city, county or state, there are very specific rules you must follow, placing limits on how long you have to file a claim, as well as how you can seek compensation for your losses. In most instances, a municipality will aggressively defend a claim for personal injury suffered in a public transportation accident. To protect your rights, you need an experienced lawyer.
The Causes of Public Transportation Accidents
The principal causes of injury in public transportation accidents are:
- Operator error—This can be the result of simple negligence, where the driver of a bus or train fails to use the proper standard of care. The driver may be talking on the phone or with passengers, instead of watching the road. The driver may operate the vehicle at unsafe speeds, or fail to properly monitor the roads for traffic.
- Negligence in the maintenance of a bus or train—Public transportation vehicles get continual use, and must be maintained and serviced on a regular basis. Routine maintenance checks may be missed, or agencies may try to stretch out maintenance schedules in an effort to minimize costs.
- Negligence in the management of work schedules or employees—Bus or train operators may be required to work too many hours without a break, or may have to work overtime, if there are staff shortages. The lack of proper rest can easily lead to carelessness and injury.
Contact the Law Offices of John E. Kusturiss, Jr.
Let us put more than 30 years of experience to work for you. We provide a free initial consultation to every client. To arrange a private meeting with an experienced Media, Pennsylvania personal injury attorney, contact us online or call us at (610) 565-0240. We are available to meet with you evenings or weekends upon request. We take Visa, MasterCard and Discover, as well as debit cards.