Determining who you may file a claim against after an accident with a bus and truck oftentimes feels overwhelming and frustrating. The legal responsibility and liability often rests with different entities, persons, and/or companies. If you suffered injuries or losses after an accident involving a bus and truck, contact a Naperville bus—truck accident lawyer at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to help you pursue fair compensation for your injuries.
When two large vehicles collide, such as buses and trucks, catastrophic injuries occur. While the Federal and State Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration provide guidance and regulations regarding these types of vehicles, accidents still occur. If you suffered injuries in a bus—truck accident, learn who you may file a claim against.
Determining Who May Be Liable
If the driver of the bus operated the vehicle in a negligent manner, such as driving while distracted, driving while drowsy, failing to obey traffic laws, talking on a cell phone, texting and driving, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you may file a claim against the driver. The types of buses involved may include school buses, public transport buses, shuttle buses, or even very large passenger vans.
The driver may carry insurance, and therefore you may negotiate with the insurance company for a settlement offer. However, in many cases, insurance companies’ adversarial tactics leave victims frustrated and confused. If you attempted to negotiate with an insurance company regarding your bus or truck accident with little success, contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to help you pursue fair compensation for your injuries.
The Bus Company May Be Liable
Responsibility and accountability for hiring bus drivers rests with the bus company. If the bus driver acted within the scope of his/her employment and his/her actions resulted in injuries or death to passengers, you may file a claim against the bus company. The legal premise for this action is respondeat superior, which means that if the driver performed duties and acted within his/her job description, liability rests with the employer as well as the driver.
Depending on the specific facts and circumstances, you may also have a claim against the bus company for negligent hiring. If the bus company failed to perform an appropriate criminal check or adequate background check on the bus driver prior to hiring them, you may have a claim against the bus company. This circumstance holds true especially when there is serious evidence of negligence in the drivers’ history, such as a charge of Driving While Under the Influence (DUI).
Again, who you file a claim against will directly depend on the type of bus involved in the accident. Local or state governments often own school buses. Public transportation buses are also often owned by the state. Oftentimes, churches, smaller organizations, or businesses own large passenger vans, and airports and hotels often own shuttle buses.
A Government Entity May Be Liable
If the bus involved in the accident was a school bus or a public bus owned by a local or state government, you may file a claim against the appropriate government entity. In these cases, the government owns the bus instead of a company, and liability for any negligent driving or negligent hiring rests with the government entity that owns the bus. Filing a government claim is legally complicated and complex, and is vastly different than filing a claim against a private entity.
The Truck Driver May Be Liable
Similar to filing a claim against the driver of a bus, if the investigation determines that the truck driver operated the commercial truck in a negligent manner, you may sue the truck driver, or his/her insurance company for compensation for your injuries and losses.
The Trucking Company May Be Liable
If a truck driver operated his/her commercial truck negligently or recklessly, you may not only be able to sue the truck driver, but also the trucking company he/she works for. Employers have a responsibility to hire trained and safe drivers. The employer of a truck driver has a responsibility to ensure that their truck drivers operate large commercial trucks without negligence or recklessness.
A Manufacturer May Be Liable
If the investigation determines that the bus-truck accident resulted from a manufacturing defect on either a part or component of the bus or truck, you may be able to sue the manufacturer under product liability law.
The Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards govern the manufacture of all vehicle parts and components in the United States. The two types of accidents that involve manufacturing defects include those accidents that directly result from a defective part or component, and the second is when the defective part or component causes a more severe or catastrophic accident to occur. In many cases, manufacturers issue recall notices regarding buses and trucks. Some of those may include:
- Unintentional deployment of airbags
- Broken accelerators
- Fires due to electrical system failures
- Loss of light
- Broken and/or cracked wheels
- Failure of steering mechanisms
- Fuel system failures
- Seatback failures
- Windshield wiper failures
We may be able to pursue a manufacturer for awards even if your accident is not due to an issue listed above.
Pursuing Awards for Your Injuries and Losses
Due to the physical size of buses and trucks, collisions between these two types of vehicles often result in severe injuries and losses. Injuries could include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Broken or fractured bones
- Internal injuries
Always seek immediate medical attention after any vehicle accident. Not only will this protect your health, but it establishes a valid claim for compensation regarding any injuries you suffered due to someone else’s negligence.
For a free legal consultation with a bus accidents lawyer serving Naperville, call (800) 794-0444
Naperville Bus—Truck Accident Lawyers
If you or a loved one suffered injuries or you lost your loved one to an accident between a bus and truck, contact a Naperville bus—truck accident lawyer at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 for a free consultation.