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Bensonhurst is a residential neighborhood in the southwestern section of the New York City borough of Brooklyn, with zip codes of 11204, 11214.
Bensonhurst Bus Accident Attorneys
Taking legal action after a bus crash and injuries is never easy and most people do not know where to even begin. At Michael J. Redenburg, Esq. PC our Bus Accident Lawyers work with clients injured in a wide range of accidents by many different parties. Contact our office at 212-240-9465 to discuss a possible case today.
Where Bus Accidents Occur in Brooklyn
With a large transit system and thousands of children transported back and forth to school on a daily basis, large amounts of Brooklynites hop on and off buses daily.
But when they do so they are putting their lives in the hands of the bus driver and the bus company. In some cases, the driver does not live up to their obligation to act reasonably to protect the safety of their passengers. When this happens, you and your family may have a possible lawsuit for financial compensation.
Bus accidents can occur in many settings:
- MTA and NYC Transit Buses
- School buses
- Tour buses including hop-on-and-off tour buses all over Brooklyn
Injuries in School Bus Accidents
In addition, there are frequent school bus accidents in the Brooklyn area.
School bus accidents can injure many people:
- Children on the bus suffer injuries in accidents
- Vehicles can strike pedestrians or children getting off the bus
- Other drivers can sustain injuries in accidents with the bus
Bus accidents are like any other personal injury case in that injured plaintiffs must show that someone else was responsible for their injuries. This is the prerequisite for being in a position to receive financial compensation. To receive payment for your injuries, you must prove that someone else was negligent, and our Brooklyn bus accident attorneys can determine whether you have a valid claim.
Who Can be a Defendant in Bus Accident Lawsuits?
Here are some possible defendants in your bus accident case:
- The mass transit or commuter bus company
- The interstate bus carrier
- The school district that operates the bus
- Any subcontractor that handles transportation for a school district
- The company that was responsible for manufacturing the bus if the accident happened as a result of a defect of the bus
Many of these parties will have legal teams ready to defend against a claim, so you need a strong legal advocate bringing your case.
Negligence in Bus Accident Cases
Many things can constitute negligence and entitle you to financial compensation, such as:
- Putting poorly trained drivers behind the wheel who do not know how to properly operate the bus
- Speeding or distracted drivers causing crashes
- The failure to properly maintain the buses, causing an equipment failure when the bus is on the road
- Inattentive drivers hitting passengers getting off the bus or pedestrians in crosswalks
- Buses cutting across traffic or making illegal turns to stop at their designated points
Identifying negligence can often require thorough investigation and extensive resources, which our firm has.
How an Attorney Helps Your Bus Accident Case
Before you reach the point of being able to make an argument about what happened to cause the crash and that someone else was responsible, you need an attorney to investigate the circumstances behind the accident. This requires gathering evidence of negligence. The lawyer will need to speak with witnesses and examine pictures of the accident scene. The attorney may even need to engage an expert witness to recreate the accident.
In addition, accident investigation also involves closely checking the bus driver.
The bus operator may:
- Have a history of substance abuse
- Be intoxicated or under the influence of drugs at the time of the accident
- Have a poor driving history with the bus company
Your attorney may need to move quickly to secure these records. They may also move to receive the results of any toxicology tests performed on the driver. Even though the transit company or the school district will perform their own investigation of the crash, you cannot rely on them to investigate in a way that can help your case because they have their own interests.
Gathering evidence is just the first step in any bus accident case. You will need to secure a fair amount of compensation to pay you back for your injuries. You may have suffered serious physical and financial harm from the accident.
Your Damages in a Bus Accident Lawsuit
Next, it is important to be aware of what you can recover financially for your bus accident injuries.
Some elements of your accident compensation can include:
- Medical expenses for all the costs that arise out of your injury both in the past and future (including prescriptions, surgeries, hospitalizations, rehabilitation, and medical equipment)
- Everything that you lost out on from either not being able to work or not being able to do the same type of work that you did before the injury
- Lost wages from having to take off time from work to care for an injured child
- Pain and suffering from the accident injury
All these damage categories apply, whether it was an adult or a child who suffered injuries in the accident. For example, if a child suffers catastrophic injuries in a school bus accident, they are entitled to lost wages for the money that they could have earned throughout their lifetime. If your child suffered injuries, it is critical to recover as much as you possibly can because they will need the money throughout their lifetime.
After You or a Loved One Suffered Injuries
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a bus accident you can put yourself in a better position for your legal claim. It begins at the scene of the accident but, chances are that if you are reading this page, the accident already occurred, and you need someone to help you gather evidence after the fact.
It is crucial to receive all the medical treatment you need after your injury.
You must do this because:
- The defendant may argue that you suffered your injury some other way, and their argument has a better chance of succeeding the more time passes from the accident.
- Some injuries are only apparent after the accident, and they require a comprehensive evaluation and diagnosis.
- Your injury diagnosis will form the basis of your bus accident claim, and you cannot file your claim until you know the extent of your injuries.
- Undiagnosed injuries can get worse over time if you do not receive medical attention.
Some common injuries that bus accident victims can suffer include:
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Neck and back injuries
- Internal injuries
- Fractures and broken bones
Injuries can be worse since most buses do not have seat belts, and bus passengers can be at additional risk when their bodies lurch due to the impact of a collision. In severe cases, the center of gravity may mean that the bus can overturn.
Why Are Bus Accident Injuries Usually Worse than Car Accident Injuries?
If you have been in an accident with a bus, chances are that you are colliding with a vehicle that is far larger than yours. The average passenger vehicle is about 3,000 or so pounds. Even if you are driving in a larger SUV, your vehicle is still tiny compared to a bus. The average city bus weighs ten times the size of your car. The weight disparity is even worse when the bus has a full load of passengers. The laws of science dictate that the occupant of the vehicle will be more seriously injured when they collide with a far heavier one.
Passengers on the bus are still vulnerable, even though they are on a vehicle that is much bigger than the car. There are no seatbelts on the bus, and passengers can slip and hit their heads on a hard surface. Sudden movements can also cause head and neck injuries.
How Do I Know What Caused My Bus Accident?
If you are a passenger on the bus, chances are that you did not see what happened to cause the crash. This is why you need an attorney to investigate what happened. They can obtain copies of things like the police report that will describe what happened. They can also interview witnesses to the crash and obtain the necessary records that could document the accident.
This is not something that you can do on your own.
They can also confirm whether the police report was correct by reviewing pictures of the scene and speaking with people. If the problem was with the bus itself, they can have an expert investigate whether the bus properly worked and whether maintenance was up to date.
How Long Will My Bus Accident Settlement Take?
This depends on many factors. If you were one of several passengers injured in the same accident, this will affect the complexity and timing of your case. The bus company may be dealing with scores of claims all at once.
In addition, proving negligence in the case can take some time. Your lawyer needs to investigate the circumstances behind the accident to demonstrate to the insurance company or a jury that someone else was to blame. Then, they would need to either present the claim to an insurance company or take the case to court. This is only the first part of the process.
Much of the timing of a settlement is out of your control. It depends on how motivated the defendant and their insurance company are to settle the case. Some may have the ability to wait you out to see what you may be willing to accept. They could put a low offer out there to test you, knowing that they can offer more in the future. Others may realize that they have high potential liability and want to lower their legal risk. You do not know about the timing until you begin to negotiate.
Is My Bus Accident Case Going to Go to Trial?
Not necessarily. While some cases will end up in court, most of them will settle before the jury issues a decision. Some never even see the court system in the first place, as they will settle at the claims process. However, filing a lawsuit is always an option that you have if the insurance company has denied your claim or is being unreasonable in settlement negotiations. Most defendants do not want to see the inside of a courtroom, and they will get serious about settling before the case reaches that point.
Even if you must file a lawsuit, you are not guaranteed to reach a trial. In most cases, the parties will talk about a settlement at multiple points in the process. Usually, they will accelerate negotiations after discovery concludes in your case. Only about 5 percent of personal injury cases will reach the point of a jury verdict. This is the exception rather than the norm. However, you need an attorney who is comfortable taking your case to trial if that is what is necessary to get you the financial recovery that you deserve.
If you have been injured in a Brooklyn Bus Accident due to someone else's negligence, contact the Bensonhurst Brooklyn Bus Accident lawyers at Michael J. Redenburg, Esq. PC and get the wheels of justice spinning for you. Call 212-240-9465 now!