San Antonio Bus Accident Lawyer
San Antonio is a big, bustling city with plenty to see and do. As such, we have a big, bustling bus system. People need to get around—to their jobs, to the historic Alamo, to Spurs games, to the River Walk, and beyond. Our thriving bus system helps people partake of all that San Antonio has to offer. Unfortunately, however, bus accidents happen. If a bus accident has left you injured, you need the help of an experienced bus accident attorney.
Bus Accident Statistics
Buses help ferry many, many people from place to place every day, and accidents are part of this dynamic. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) forwards several significant statistics related to large truck and bus accidents:
- The number of fatal large truck and bus accidents in 2016 was 29 percent higher than the number in 2009.
- From 2015 to 2016, the number of fatal large truck and bus accidents rose by 6 percent.
- Since 2009, the number of injurious large truck and bus accidents has increased by 62 percent (based on 2015 numbers).
- In 2016, there were about 119,000 large truck and bus accidents that resulted in injury.
- From 2006 to 2016—on average—school buses and transit buses accounted for 40 percent of all fatal bus accidents and intercity buses accounted for 13 percent of those same accidents.
Bus accidents are dangerous and often lead to serious injuries with overarching physical, financial, and emotional damages. If you or someone you care about has been injured in a bus accident, you are likely overwhelmed by the situation, but you are not alone. The dedicated legal team at The Law Offices of George Salinas in San Antonio is here to help. Our experienced bus accident attorneys have the skill, knowledge, and determination to aggressively advocate for the compensation to which you’re entitled.
Bus Accidents and Their Causes
Any number of factors can cause or contribute to bus accidents, which makes these claims that much more difficult. While every bus accident claim is unique to its own set of circumstances, there are several safety components that commonly play a role in bus crashes:
- The bus driver is distracted; impaired by alcohol, drugs, or exhaustion; or otherwise negligent.
- The bus is poorly and/or unsafely maintained.
- The bus has a design or manufacturing flaw.
- The bus malfunctions.
Additionally, buses typically don’t incorporate passenger-protection devices, such as seatbelts, which make them that much more dangerous in accidents.
Bus driver negligence. Most bus accidents boil down to human error, which is often attributable to the bus driver. You trust the bus driver who’s transporting you across San Antonio to drive safely and to safely deposit you at your destination. Bus drivers sometimes, however, engage in negligent driving practices:
- Driving while distracted, while impaired, or while exhausted
- Ignoring the rules of the road, including traffic lights, signals, and signs
- Driving aggressively, including exceeding the speed limit
- Failing to accommodate for inclement weather, low visibility, or inferior road conditions
When a bus driver gets behind the wheel of a bus that transports large numbers of people from place to place, he or she takes on an immense responsibility. When that same driver engages in negligent driving practices, he or she endangers everyone on the road—including the bus’s passengers.
The bus company. Mass transportation serves a significant societal purpose, and as such, we place heightened trust in their services. The State of Texas recognizes this elevated level of public trust and, therefore, imposes a heightened level of duty for these “common carriers.” Buses are large and heavy, carry large numbers of people, and are more difficult to maneuver than noncommercial vehicles. Bus companies and bus drivers are, therefore, held to higher safety standards.
Government buses. When the bus in question is a government bus, it changes things considerably. Private common carriers are subject to laws that are more amenable to accident victims, but government carriers like San Antonio’s city transit system are afforded additional protections that shield them from some liability. This is not to say that you can’t recover for the damages you incur in a government bus accident, but you will likely face additional barriers.
The Texas Tort Claims Act dictates how lawsuits against Texas state and local government agencies are handled, and it’s complicated. If you’ve been injured in a city bus accident, you need a bus accident lawyer who understands the unique issues involved in this type of claim. When the government is involved, the rules are tricky and the time restrictions are tight. Retain experienced legal counsel as soon after the accident as you possibly can. The strength of your claim will likely depend on it, especially since your case will be subject to strict time limits.
The insurance company. If you’ve been injured in a bus accident, you’re going to be hearing from an insurance company in the near future. While you may be asked to give a statement, you don’t have to do so before speaking with an experienced bus accident lawyer. Insurance companies are motivated by large profits, and many aren’t above stooping to tricky methods to ensure those profits. Your skilled bus accident lawyer will provide the insurance company with any necessary information. Further, the insurance company may be quick to offer you a minimal settlement to ensure that you can’t fight for what you’re rightfully owed later. Don’t accept any settlement offer before you’ve discussed it with an experienced bus accident attorney.
If You Were Injured in a Bus Accident, You Need an Experienced San Antonio Bus Accident Attorney
San Antonio is a thriving city with a comprehensive and efficient bus system. If you’ve been injured in a bus accident, however, it’s a different story. The dedicated bus accident lawyers at The Law Offices of George Salinas in San Antonio are here to help. Our experienced legal team has the skill, knowledge, and determination to aggressively advocate for your just compensation. Your claim is important, so please contact or call us at (210) 225-0909 to schedule an appointment today.