School buses are supposedly one of the safest modes of transportation, but just last week two people died when a school bus and a dump truck collided on a highway in New Jersey. The official cause of the accident is still uncertain, but most sources claim that it was caused by the bus driver pulling an illegal U-turn on the highway using one of the police paths. In the process of the ongoing investigation it has been discovered that the bus driver had numerous driving violations on his record. Most of the violations were administrative ones, such as parking tickets, but some were for speeding. Even with the violations, the driver had no points on his license and still met all of the requirements to be a school bus driver, though his license had been suspended until January of this year.
More on School Bus Liability
The bus was taking students on a field trip to a nearby historical site when it was torn from its wheelbase, leading to the deaths of both a ten-year-old student and one of the teachers. Since it is uncertain if the students were wearing seatbelts at the time of the accident and what caused the collision, no lawsuits have been filed, but the attorney for the student’s parents has stated their intent to file if the driver is found to be at fault for the accident. Negligence and liability in this case depends on whether the bus driver did in fact make an illegal U-turn, or was practicing any other unsafe driving maneuvers. If the driver is found to have fault the attorney has established that both the driver and the school board will be named in the lawsuit. The school board incurs liability for the accident because the driver was their employee and they hired him despite his established record of driving violations.
In Florida, an accident like this would also call into question the presence and use of seat belts. If the bus did not have seat belts, the school board would incur further liability, because the state requires all school buses bought after 2001 to be equipped with seatbelts. Students are not required to wear the belts, but if they are in accident and were not buckled in, the liability for that is on the student.
If you or someone you know need to consult an experienced Miami Personal Injury attorney for an accident or injury caused by a bus, Aigen Law Firm is here to assist you. We understand that in this moment, especially when there is a death or an injured individual, that litigation may not be on your mind. However, your lawyer at Aigen Law Firm will be available to guide you, protect your rights, answer all your questions, and fight to ensure that you maximize your recovery against all responsible parties.
Please do not hesitate to submit an online FREE CASE REVIEW. At Aigen Law Firm, an experienced lawyer is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week working relentlessly on behalf of victims who suffer from all types of accidents. We offer a free consultation for your personal injury case and there is no fee unless we recover for you.