Buses are an everyday part of many Washington residents’ lives. Some people rely on school buses to take their children to school, others use mass transit busses to get to work and others ride on coach buses to take them on vacation. Whatever the reason people are riding a bus, Washington residents expect that the bus drivers are attentive, well rested and ready to get them safely to their destination. However, that sadly is not always the case. With even small mistakes on the part of the bus driver or the bus company, a serious bus accident can occur.
In one accident in a nearby state, nine people were killed and an additional 38 people were injured when a coach bus driver loss control over the vehicle and the bus flew almost 200 feet into a ravine. While the bus company blames the accident on black ice, the coach bus accident victims tell a different story. 12 of the victims — including the estates of two people who died in the accident — have recently sued the bus company and the state for $700 million.
The plaintiffs claim that the driver had not had enough sleep prior to the accident. They also claim that he was driving too fast. Furthermore, the group has claimed that the state was negligent because it failed to provide strong enough barriers on the side of the road to keep the bus from falling into the ravine.
A civil suit — like this one — can help victims of bus accidents recover much needed financial compensation following an accident. This compensation can help to cover medical expenses, lost wages, rehabilitation costs and other expenses that have been caused by a negligent bus driver or negligent bus company. When negligence plays a role in causing a bus accident, crash victims should make sure they know their legal rights including the right to bring suit.
Source: The Seattle Times, “$700 million lawsuit in Pendleton bus crash,” Dec. 26, 2013