Picture it. You’re riding the bus to get to work. It seems like any other day. The sun is shining, birds are chirping, people are smiling…what could go wrong? Suddenly, without warning, you are involved in a bus crash.
Maybe it’s a serious accident, or maybe it’s not. But either way, what do you do? The bus isn’t your personal vehicle. Who would you contact? What about insurance? What if you are injured?
The truth is, bus crashes happen more often than you think. In 2018, there were 5,096 large trucks and buses involved in fatal crashes.
It is important to know the steps to take and what to do immediately after the crash, because what you do after an accident can define your outcome later. The experts at Georgia Auto Law can help you.
Check out the rest of this article to find out what steps to take, what you should know, and what not to do.
If you are in an accident, the first thing you need to do is call 911. You need medical personnel and law enforcement to document the scene of the accident. There may be other people injured, or maybe the bus driver cannot call. Or they might even refuse to call.
Certain states like Georgia, require you by law to report any accident resulting in injury, death, or property damage over $500. You are required to report this to your local law enforcement agency as soon as possible.
Get Medical Care Immediately
If you are injured in a crash, get medical attention immediately. In addition to following state laws, you should seek medical care even if you think your injuries are mild. Often symptoms of an injury will not show up right away, especially with a muscle strain or whiplash.
You are running on adrenaline right after an accident. It can often take a few days for these types of injuries to show themselves.
Make sure to be checked for neck, head, or back injuries, as well as for muscle tenderness or soreness.
Complications can result from undetected injuries like:
- Brain injuries
- Memory problems
- Difficulty with motor skills
Bus accident injuries can result in more severe injuries due to the nature of how buses are built. Spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries are more likely to occur.
Busses are taller, have a different center of gravity, and people usually are not wearing seat belts. Not to mention, the impact can make missiles out of purses, bags, and other belongings.
So while the chances of being involved in a bus crash are fairly low overall, they do have some unique risks and challenges.
Gather Information From the Accident Scene
If you are able, get all the information you can from the accident scene. It will be helpful in case you need to file a claim against the bus company at a later date. Only do this if it is safe; do not let it delay your medical treatment!
What information should you get?
- Take pictures if possible.
- Obtain the names, phone numbers, and email addresses of any witnesses.
- Look for any additional information at the scene that will help paint a picture of how the accident occurred.
Law enforcement will be already documenting the accident scene, but you cannot always rely on others to get the details you need for your particular case.
Don’t Make Any Statements
Don’t make any statements that could hurt you down the road. Making any kind of statement to law enforcement or medical personnel that you feel just fine, can hurt your chances to file a personal injury claim.
It can even hurt your chances to receive the insurance money you might be owed. Do not discuss any previous accidents or injuries.
Talk to an attorney before you give any statements to anyone. You need to be sure you are familiar with the laws regarding filing an injury claim before anything else!
Find an Experienced Bus Accident Attorney
If you have been injured in a bus crash, find an attorney that has experience with bus accidents. They carry legal issues that are a breed of their own.
A bus crash is not as straightforward as you might think it is. Usually, your own insurance will not provide coverage for this type of accident.
If there is a third party at fault, then the bus company may not have any liability. You can file a claim against the third party, but what if the bus driver is at fault?
This is when things become even more complicated. Most local transit companies are operated by government entities. Then you are faced with filing a claim against the government entity.
Most government entities are self-insured, so what happens if they deny your claim? Well, then you are left to make a complicated personal injury claim against the government.
So finding an experienced attorney is necessary. This is especially true if you are facing long-term health complications, missed work, and huge financial loss.
Involved in a Bus Crash?
Talk to your attorney if you have been involved in a bus crash. If you need an attorney, talk to Georgia Auto Law. We are among the top accident injury lawyers in the state of Georgia.
We have the experience you need to get the most out of your personal injury claim. You need support during this time, so don’t try to go it all alone.
We deal exclusively in commercial auto and truck accident cases within Georgia. This gives us an expertise that’s unparalleled by other law teams. Best of all, if you don’t win your case, then you don’t pay a dime.
Get a free consultation for your case by calling us at (404) 662-4949 or filling out our online contact form today. Please provide as much detail as possible about your case, and one of our lawyers will get back to you shortly. We look forward to hearing from you.