Because of the immense size and weight of a city bus compared with a smaller vehicle, any automobile collision or pedestrian accident involving a bus is likely to result in devastating injuries or death. These catastrophic accidents often lead to lengthy periods of hospitalization and rehabilitation, and a lifelong struggle with disabilities and impairments. Attorney Robert N. Katz of Katz Wright Fleming Dodson & Mildenhall LLC helps victims of bus accidents in Atlanta and throughout Georgia obtain the compensation they need to pay for their medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other legal damages.
The size and weight of buses are two factors that increase the likelihood of a serious accident, including:
- Restricted maneuverability
- Need for longer reaction time
- Need for increased stopping distance
- Limited visibility of the bus driver
- Obstructed views for other motorists and pedestrians
Accidents involving the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) or another governmental entity must be handled differently than accidents involving charter buses or other commercial vehicles. Claims against the city, county, or state often require that notice be given to the public entity within a very short timeframe, followed by a waiting period before a civil lawsuit can be commenced. Often times, an injury victim and their family have to obtain “permission” to sue a government agency, or follow very complicated steps to seek recovery. (E.g. The Georgia Tort Claims Act) Injured passengers, motorists and pedestrians should always hire an experienced bus accident attorney who will make sure their claim is handled in a timely manner when public transit is involved.High Duty of Care Owed to Passengers
As common carriers, buses owe a higher duty of care to their passengers than drivers of other vehicles. Bus drivers and bus companies must exercise extraordinary diligence in regard to the safety of their passengers. A bus involved in a collision with an automobile may therefore be liable to any passengers injured on the bus as well. In addition, a bus company may be liable for passengers injured in other ways, such as when the:
- Bus stops too suddenly
- Bus accelerates before passengers are properly seated
- Bus stops too far from the curb, causing trip and fall of passengers boarding or exiting the bus
- Bus takes turns too sharply, or engages in other careless or reckless driving
Bus companies and transit authorities have a great deal of resources to expend in investigating an accident or fighting a claim. They may try to settle very quickly for a small amount if you are unrepresented, or drag out the case for as long as they can, hoping you will give up on pursuing your claim or miss the statute of limitations. The legal team at Katz Wright Fleming Dodson & Mildenhall LLC knows all of the defense tactics as well as the steps to take to make sure your claim is handled properly. We won't give up and will fight to make sure you are fairly compensated for your injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured in a bus accident in Atlanta, Marietta, Jonesboro, or elsewhere in the state of Georgia or in the southeastern U.S., contact our office to speak with a compassionate and capable attorney who can help you get the care and compensation you deserve.