Bus Accidents and Arizon

Bus Accidents and Arizona Law

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Bus Accidents and Arizona LawBeing in any accident is jarring; both emotionally and physically. But an accident with a large vehicle like a bus is even more so. If you’re riding the bus, you may be injured due to the lower level of safety for bus riders. If you’re driving another vehicle that collides with a bus, you’re likely to have injuries and serious damage to your car.

Buses vs. Cars

According to Arizona law, buses are very specifically defined. Under ARS 28-101 they are described as “a motor vehicle designed for carrying sixteen or more passengers, including the driver.” Also, public transit is specifically defined as “the transportation of passengers on scheduled routes by means of a conveyance on an individual passenger fare-paying basis, excluding transportation by a sightseeing bus, school bus or taxi or a vehicle not operated on a scheduled route basis.”Buses handle very differently than cars, and the safety measures are less stringent. First of all, buses generally do not have seatbelts for passengers. Federal law only requires seatbelts in buses under 10,000 pounds. Modern school buses are safer than cars in most instances, so they aren’t required. School buses are designed with compartmentalization, a concept that refers to using close seating and padded seats to create a “bubble” for passengers.What about commuter buses though? Those buses also use compartmentalization, and adding seatbelts would be expensive. However, the NHTSA found that using seatbelts could reduce the risk of death in bus rollover accidents by a whopping 77%.Buses are harder to maneuver than cars, and many times cars will cut in front of a bus in traffic to avoid being stuck behind them. As a result, bus accidents are not as rare as we would like, and injuries are common.

What To Do If You’re In a Bus Accident

In a bus accident, there are more injuries and more responsible parties than in a typical car accident. It’s important to make sure that you fully protect your rights and your ability to receive appropriate compensation for your injuries.The first thing to do is get immediate medical attention. The bus staff should call 911, but if they do not, be sure that you do so as quickly as possible. This will not only get medical care to the scene, but it will bring police who can document the accident, interview witnesses, and provide outside observation of what happened.You should also be sure to go to the hospital if emergency staff suggests it. Many times an injury is not evident at the moment, and failure to get treatment can be used against you when it comes to receiving compensation for your injuries in the future. Be sure to get tests for head, spine, and back injuries in particular, as these types of injuries often don’t show symptoms until days or weeks after an accident.As soon as you can, document the scene and your account of the accident. Despite how you feel directly after the accident, the reality is that your memory will fade quickly, and you may not remember key elements unless you document it. Get the name and business card of any officers on the scene. Take pictures. Record a video or write about the incident as soon as you can. Of course, do not do any of these steps at the expense of receiving appropriate care for your injuries.Finally, make sure that you hire an experienced Phoenix bus accident lawyer. Buses typically have more comprehensive insurance than cars, and offer more coverage for all occupants. However, remember that the insurance company isn’t working for you, and they are working to get the lowest settlement possible. So instead of taking the first offer, hire an experienced Phoenix bus accident lawyer who is familiar with local laws, bus insurance, and liability. Your attorney will have your best in mind and help you get the full compensation you deserve.If you’ve been injured in a bus accident, you’ve been through a frightening experience. I’m here to help. You can call 480-899-1025 or schedule your appointment online. Either way, contact me today for a free case evaluation. I’ll help you get the compensation you deserve.