Randolph, MA Bus Accident Lawyer

Whether you take the bus to work each morning or drive alongside buses in your own car, the risk of bus accidents exists. If you are hurt in a crash with a bus, get immediate medical attention and call an attorney.

Depending on how it happened, various parties might be held responsible for a bus accident. Bus drivers, other drivers, private bus companies, and public transportation authorities might all be implicated somehow. We must prove how the defendants were negligent to prove your case and get the compensation you need. To accomplish this goal, we need strong supporting evidence. Evidence is often difficult to obtain, and you should talk to your lawyer about where and how to get it. Some common causes of bus accidents include inexperienced bus drivers, reckless behavior on the road, and distractions or inattentive driving. Damages in bus accidents can be very high. Plaintiffs often claim extensive economic losses in addition to non-economic injuries like psychological distress and physical pain from injuries.

To get a confidential case evaluation for no cost, call (617) 925-6407 and talk to our bus accident attorneys at the Law Office of John J. Sheehan.

Who You Can Hold Responsible for a Bus Accident in Randolph, MA

Bus accidents are often big, chaotic, and, quite frankly, messy. It is often difficult to determine exactly who is to blame without help from law enforcement and an attorney. Bus drivers, other drivers, and the bus company might be involved. In some cases, public transportation agencies or authorities might be implicated.

Bus Drivers and Other Drivers

In many bus accident cases, the bus driver is directly responsible for the collision. The bus driver bears a heavy responsibility on the road. Perhaps they were not paying attention to the road. Maybe they were talking to a passenger or on their phone. There might be any number of reasons why the accident happened, and the bus driver may be at the center of many of them.

In some cases, other drivers besides the bus driver might be responsible for a bus accident. For example, if another driver cuts off the bus driver but the bus driver is speeding and unable to stop, both drivers might be deemed responsible.

Private Bus Companies

If we sue the bus driver for the accident, our bus accident attorneys might also be able to sue the company that employed the bus driver. Under the legal principle known as respondeat superior, employers may be deemed vicariously liable for injuries caused by negligent employees.

The key to this strategy is that the employee’s negligent actions must have been within the scope of their usual job functions and duties. Including the bus company is often a good idea, as they are often legally responsible and better able to pay for your damages, as they might have greater financial resources than the individual driver.

Public Transportation Agencies

In some cases, the bus company that hired the negligent bus driver is not a private entity. For example, public bus lines are often part of public transportation networks owned and operated by governmental agencies and entities. Suing a governmental entity differs from suing a private person, business, or organization. We may need to get around the Massachusetts Tort Claims Act. In Randolph, public buses may be operated by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA).

According to Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 258 § 2, public employees, like bus drivers, may be liable for personal injuries or loss of property in the same manner as a private person. However, there might be limitations on what kind of damages are available. Generally, punitive damages against the government are limited to $100,000. However, compensatory damages for bodily injuries are not bound by this limitation.

How to Prove Your Legal Claims in a Randolph, MA Bus Accident Case

Proving your claims might be a difficult endeavor. We need to be prepared with the strongest evidence we can find and solid legal arguments. To prove your claims, we have to establish the plaintiff’s negligence. Where we find evidence might depend on where and how your bus accident occurred.

Proving Negligence

Negligence is more than reckless or careless behavior, although those are key to the definition. As a legal concept, negligence is defined by four legal elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. Our evidence must sufficiently establish every element. If even a single element of negligence is not proven, your claims cannot succeed.

The first element is the defendant’s duty of care. This is their legal obligation of safety, which they owed you at the time of the bus accident. Bus drivers owe a duty of care to drive with reasonable safety under the circumstances. They also owe passengers on the bus a duty of care and safety.

The second element is the defendant’s breach of their duty. The breach is something the defendant did or omitted that violated their duty of care and safety. It might consist of running a red light, driving while intoxicated, speeding, or doing something that violates the traffic code.

Causation is the third element and is the link between the defendant’s breach and your injuries. Essentially, we must show how the breach is the direct and proximate cause of your accident.

Finally, your damages have to be real. Hypothetical damages cannot be claimed.

Gathering Evidence

The evidence we need, and the evidence that is actually available, depends on how your accident occurred. If you were a passenger on the bus during the accident, we might rely on other passengers for their testimony in court. They might file their own claims, so staying in contact with them and their legal representatives is important.

We should also demand the bus company turn over any security camera footage. Many buses come equipped with cameras, and some have cameras that monitor both the inside and outside of the bus. This kind of footage might shed much light on how the accident occurred.

Injuries from bus accidents are known to be severe. We may need your medical records to help prove just how badly you were hurt. This can be especially important in cases where the plaintiff’s injuries come with long-term complications or were particularly gruesome.

Speak to Our Randolph, MA Bus Accident Attorneys About Your Claims Today

To get a confidential case evaluation for no cost, call (617) 925-6407 and talk to our bus accident attorneys at the Law Office of John J. Sheehan.