San Francisco Bus Accident Lawyer
Scarlett Law Group Can Advocate for Your Rights
If you have been involved in an accident involving a bus in California,
or elsewhere, you must contact lawyers with experience handling these
cases. Accidents involving buses are unique. Products defects issues,
improper maintenance issues, and issues involving driver negligence, must
often time be analyzed in each case. Obtaining the justice you deserve
requires a thorough analysis by qualified California bus accident lawyers.
What are My Rights After a Bus Accident?
If you are a passenger in a bus, and are injured as a result of an accident,
special rules apply. For example, in California, a bus, (which is a common
carrier), must use the highest care for its passengers safety, while the
passengers need only use reasonable care for their safety. The degree
of care which a bus must therefore utilize is higher than that duty owed
through a negligence analysis. In other words, while automobile operators
need only utilize “reasonable care”, the operator of a common
carrier must use the “highest care” toward its passengers.
Common carriers must carry passengers or property safely. Common carriers
must use the highest care and the vigilance of a very cautious person.
They must do all that human care, vigilance and foresight reasonably can
do under the circumstances to avoid harm to passengers or property. While
a common carrier does not guarantee the safety of its passengers or property
that it transports, it must use reasonable skill to provide everything
necessary for safe transportation, in view of the transportation used
and the practical operation of the business.
Where minor children are injured as passengers on a bus, special rules
apply as well. In California, if a common carrier voluntarily accepts
a child as a passenger, it must use as much additional care as is reasonably
necessary to ensure the child’s safety. What this means is there
is a further heightening of the care owed by the bus company above that
involved for adults.
Where ill or disabled persons are injured as passengers on a bus, special
rules will likely apply as well. In California, if a common carrier voluntarily
accepts an ill or disabled person as a passenger, and is aware of that
person’s condition, then it must use as much additional care as
is reasonably necessary to ensure the passenger safety. Again, this is
a further heightening of the care owed by the bus company above that involved
for the non-disabled or healthy individual.
Common carriers must use the highest care in constructing, servicing, inspecting,
and maintaining their vehicles and equipment for transporting passengers
or property. Bus companies must follow this principle. For example, a
common carrier is responsible for a defect in its vehicles and equipment
used for transporting passengers or property if the carrier either (a)
created the defect; or (b) knew of the defect; or (c) would have known
of the defect if it had used the highest care. Moreover, common carriers
must keep up with modern improvements in transportation. While they are
not required to seek out and use every new invention, they must adopt
commonly accepted safety designs and devices into vehicles and equipment
they use for transporting passengers or property.
As indicated, it is generally undisputed that most bus companies for hire
for the transportation of passengers are common carriers. Where a bus
carrier maintains a regular place of business for the purpose of transporting
passengers or property, and where the carrier advertises its services
to the general public, and charges standard fees for its services, a common
carrier may be found. In fact, I carrier can be a common carrier even
if it does not have a regular schedule of departures, a fixed route, or
a transportation license.
Schedule Your Free Consultation Today
Accordingly, it is absolutely imperative that you contact qualified personal
injury lawyers if you have been involved in a bus accident as a passenger,
pedestrian, or operator of other vehicle. Often times, bus companies vigorously
defend actions brought against them. This results due to the catastrophic
nature of the injuries that usually result when a bus is involved in an accident.
Contact our San Francisco office today to discuss your case with our experienced bus accident attorneys. We look
forward to putting our expertise to work on your case.