Fishers is a city on the move, with a population that has grown by over 25 percent in the past decade and a downtown area that continues to undergo major redevelopment. Its nearly 100,000 residents have plenty of places to go, and some get there by bus, whether it is a public bus like the Hamilton County Express or a charter or school bus. Buses offer ease and convenience of travel, but they are not risk free. There are approximately 63,000 bus accidents nationwide each year, many of them resulting in significant injuries.
You may be eligible to recover compensation if you have been hurt in a bus accident, but a successful outcome is never guaranteed. To increase the odds in your favor, consider seeking out the assistance of the Fishers bus accident lawyers at Hensley Legal Group.
For more than 25 years, Hensley has been defending the rights of the everyday people of Indiana. We are committed to making sure that justice is available to everyone in The Hoosier State.
To schedule a free consultation with a Fishers bus accident attorney, please call us at (317) 472-3333, chat with us online, or complete our contact form.
How Do Bus Accidents Occur?
There are a number of reasons why a bus accident may occur, though some of the most common causes include:
- Speeding – Driving too fast is responsible for more than 15,000 traffic accidents per year in Indiana. Speeding motorists have less time to react but need more time to stop, and the results can be deadly: excessive speed is a factor in a third of all fatal crashes.
- Distraction – Distracted driving is the second leading cause of traffic accidents, killing an average of nine people across the country each day. Anything that takes a driver’s attention away from the road can be hazardous, with cellphone use contributing to 12 percent of all distraction-based crashes in Indiana.
- Passenger-based distraction – Given that buses typically carry more passengers than other vehicles, distracting passenger behavior is more likely to lead to a bus accident than a collision involving a car or truck.
- Fatigue – According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsy drivers cause as many as 100,000 accidents, 50,000 injuries, and 800 fatalities in America annually. Bus drivers may be more prone to suffer fatigue because they spend over eight times as many hours behind the wheel as the average motorist.
- Drunk driving – Far too many people drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Indiana, and the results can be catastrophic: 124 people died in alcohol-related collisions in the state in 2020. Drunk and high drivers engage in some of the most reckless behavior on the road, greatly increasing the risk of a car or bus accident.
- Poor training – Professional bus drivers must undergo extensive training to be certified, and if this training is of poor quality, they are more likely to harm others.
- Confusion over bus operations – Drivers who do not understand how to interact with buses can cause avoidable accidents, such as a rear-end collision at a bus stop.
- Inadequate bus maintenance – Mass transit buses take on considerable wear and tear, racking up nearly four times the annual mileage of the average passenger vehicle. Without regular maintenance, a bus could suffer a dangerous malfunction in traffic.
No matter what caused your accident, our Fishers bus accident lawyers can advise of the best course of action to take.
Who Deserves the Blame for a Bus Accident?
Any number of parties may deserve blame for a bus accident, depending on the circumstances leading up to the incident.
If a bus collides with a stationary object, the bus’s driver is probably at fault. When a bus is involved in a crash with another vehicle, either driver could be liable. Sometimes an outside party could bear responsibility, such as a manufacturer or servicing agent when there is an equipment malfunction or a public works department if faulty road conditions are a factor. In certain instances, multiple parties could share varying levels of blame for which they would have varying levels of financial exposure.
Given the complexities that may be involved in a bus accident, it is essential to identify and pursue everyone who may be at fault within the time allotted by law, known as the Statute of Limitations. The Statute is two years for most bus accidents in Indiana, though it can be shorter in cases against government entities. If you do not file suit or otherwise resolve your claim within this window, you could be prevented from obtaining full compensation.
Our detail-oriented Fishers bus accident attorneys never fail to dot every “I” and cross every “T” needed to establish a valid claim.
Steps to Take After a Bus Accident
To protect yourself and any future case you may have, remember to take the following steps after a bus accident:
- Dial 911 – If the bus driver does not contact emergency services right away, dial 911 yourself so that police and EMTs will be available to document the incident and tend to the injured.
- Seek treatment – Do not delay in seeking medical assistance in the aftermath of a bus accident, even if you do not believe you are that hurt. Certain injuries take time to present themselves, and gaps in treatment could hinder your recovery and cast doubt on the validity of your case.
- Take photos and videos – A visual record of the accident can be useful in conveying the severity of the damages and resolving liability disputes. Take out your phone to snap pictures and shoot videos when you can.
- Obtain eyewitness information – Independent witnesses can be invaluable, so try to get the names and numbers of everybody present and encourage them to share their accounts with the responding officers.
- Avoid the insurance company – Insurance company representatives may contact you very shortly after a bus accident, but avoid talking to them if possible. The most innocuous comment could be used to undermine your case, especially if you do not fully understand your rights.
- Meet with an attorney – A knowledgeable attorney can explain your rights and answer your questions about what initiating a claim might entail.
How Our Bus Accident Lawyers Can Make a Difference
A bus accident can be over in a matter of seconds, but its impact can be felt far longer. When medical bills accumulate while you are physically unable to work, simply keeping your family afloat can seem like an impossible task, much less getting your life back to normal.
When the worst has happened, you need attorneys with the compassion to support you through your struggles and the determination to help you overcome them. You need the Fishers bus accident attorneys at Hensley Legal Group. We never let the intimidation tactics of large insurance companies prevent us from serving the best interests of our clients.
If you decide to hire our firm, we will conduct a comprehensive investigation to identify and pursue everyone who is responsible for your bus accident within the time permitted by law. We will also secure the materials needed to support your claim, including:
- Police reports
- Traffic citations and dispositions
- Driver histories
- Witness statements
- Crash scene photos
- Dash cam, traffic light, and surveillance footage
- Black box data
- Cellphone records
- Vehicle service logs
- Accident reconstruction
Once we have put together a rock-solid case against the at-fault parties, we will work to negotiate a settlement for all of your losses, including:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Psychological and emotional trauma
- Punitive damages
If we do not receive an offer that reflects the true value of your claim, we are more than willing to go to trial for a verdict that does, unlike many of our competitors, who rarely, if ever, see the inside of a courtroom.
We understand you may be concerned about additional expenditures at this time, so you will be relieved to know that our firm works on a contingency basis. You will never pay us anything unless we win.
Let Hensley focus on the intricate details of building your bus accident case so you can focus on the big picture – becoming well again.
Contact Our Fishers Bus Accident Lawyers
Hensley Legal Group has built its practice on defending innocent victims who have been injured through no fault of their own. Our Fishers bus accident lawyers are always ready to discuss the legal remedies available to you.
Call (317) 472-3333, chat with us online, or complete our contact form for a no-cost case review with an experienced bus accident attorney.