Across the country, parents entrust school districts to provide safe school buses for their children. It is every parent’s worst nightmare to hear their child has been injured in an accident. When this nightmare becomes a reality, it is critical to understand all pertinent details surrounding the accident including who was responsible for the collision. It is imperative to determine liability as several parties may be liable for this type of accident, which can make collecting compensation for your child’s damages more challenging. Keep reading and contact our determined Prince George’s County Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyers who can help you understand your legal options.
Who is responsible for a school bus accident?
Fortunately, school bus accidents are not a common occurrence. However, like any other type of traffic accident, they can happen at any time due to negligence. Determining liability in a school bus accident is challenging because several parties may be responsible for the cause of the collision.
Following a school bus accident, parents assume the only responsible party for the accident is the bus driver as they were the ones behind the wheel. Although in some cases this may be true, it is not always the case. Bus drivers must abide by the rules of the road. If they are found negligent in any way, parents can file a claim against them to collect compensation for their child’s injuries. However, other times, other responsible parties may have contributed to the school bus accident. For instance, in most cases, the school district can be named in a lawsuit as they are responsible for ensuring the school buses are in good condition. This means they must ensure they are regularly inspected and any issues are remedied before students climb aboard. If they fail to ensure the school bus is in good condition, they can be held liable for the accident. Moreover, the school district is responsible for hiring and training school bus drivers. If they hire a school bus driver without the proper experience or training, they can be held responsible for a collision.
Further, sometimes school districts use school buses from government entities or private companies to transport students to and from school. When this is the case, the actual owner of the school bus can be held liable if they fail to conduct proper routine maintenance on the bus to ensure there are no issues. The school bus manufacturer may also be responsible if the cause of the accident was a defect or malfunctioning mechanical part such as a faulty break. Similar to other types of accidents, a third party can also be held liable if their negligent actions caused the accident to occur.
If your child has been injured in a school bus accident, it is in your best interest to contact one of our trusted team members. Our firm is committed to helping our clients hold negligent parties accountable.