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Central Wash. school bus crash remains under investigation

It does not appear that any information has been released about what might have caused the school bus crash in central Washington last week that injured 39 students. There is much to investigate in bus accidents--including the driver's history, log books, vehicle maintenance records as well as information about the bus company.

The school bus overturned on a highway before coming to rest off the road on its side, according to news reports. All of the students on board at the time of the bus accident were injured; three were injured seriously. The bus apparently veered off of Highway 281, south of Quincy, and then overcorrected and rolled off of the roadway, according to the Washington State Patrol.

Most of the injuries were minor--including scrapes, bruises and bloody noses. However, one child was airlifted to a hospital and two others were transported to a hospital out of town.

The driver was not injured, according to news reports.

There was no other vehicle involved in this accident and road conditions were reported to be dry and bare at the time the bus rolled off of the road.

As this investigation continues, some of the parents of the injured students may choose to pursue personal injury litigation to get to the bottom of this and to seek compensation for the related medical expenses. Parents may also need to recoup lost wages from time spent out of work caring for injured children.

Filing a claim for injuries sustained during a bus accident is often more difficult than claims against private insurance companies. Often, these buses are owned by public entities, such as the school district or county, and there are special rules about bringing legal claims against these entities. These types of cases require a certain type of legal knowledge.

Source: Seattle Times, "39 students injured in Wash. school bus crash," Shannon Dininny, March 12, 2012

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