Philadelphia Bus Accident Attorneys / School Bus Accidents
Bus Accident Lawyers in Pennsylvania & New Jersey
A bus accident can be just as devastating to a victim as other types of motor vehicle accident. Whether you have been injured as a passenger on an improperly operated bus, as a driver or passenger of motor vehicle struck by a bus, or as a pedestrian hit by a negligent bus driver, the Philadelphia bus accident attorneys at Messa & Associates are available to help you. If you have suffered physical harm because of an accident related to the negligence of a bus company or its driver in some way, including a public mass transit bus, charter bus, tour bus or school bus accident, call our Philadelphia bus accident lawyers immediately.
The use of public transportation has become a viable option for many people with the increase in vehicles on the roadways due to the population increase. Also, the escalations in the cost of vehicle operation and maintenance for the average consumer have made public transportation, including buses, a better alternative to gas-guzzling automobiles. As schools are built to accommodate the growing number of students in suburban and rural areas, the number of children who ride a school bus each day continues to grow. With more people on the roadways, though, this choice also comes with its own hazards. Experienced Philadelphia bus accident lawyers know that bus accidents can be caused by a number of factors including driver error or fatigue, poor road conditions and maintenance issues. No matter the cause, the Pennsylvania and New Jersey bus accident attorneys at Messa & Associates are committed to helping those who suffer serious injuries in a bus accident to obtain the compensation they need to rebuild their life.
Philadelphia Bus Accident Lawyers Understand the Causes of Bus Accidents
Bus accidents can involve government-owned buses used in public transportation, privately-owned tour buses for short- or long-distance travel, commuter buses and school buses. The causes and circumstances of a bus accident may be complicated and more than one party may be liable for the injuries sustained in the crash. A knowledgeable Philadelphia bus accident lawyer from Messa & Associates will help you sort out the facts and circumstances of your accident and injuries.
Bus drivers may be at fault if they are intoxicated, fatigued, distracted, careless or even reckless, failing to adhere to basic safety rules. Bus companies and public entities, such as school districts, may be responsible by failing to properly train or supervise their drivers, or failing to properly maintain their buses. Drivers of other motor vehicles may be liable for an accident and the resulting injuries if they fail to obey traffic laws or practice unsafe driving. Furthermore, if the facts so warrant, an experienced Philadelphia bus accident attorney may seek to hold accountable the bus maintenance company who improperly services an unsafe bus or a public entity that fails to safely maintain its roads. Sorting out who is at fault for the accident and to what extents requires thorough, methodical review of the facts and circumstances of a bus accident by a capable, diligent team of bus accident attorneys like those of Messa & Associates.
Why You Need a Philadelphia Bus Accident Attorney
Though many personal injury attorneys are experienced motor vehicle accident attorneys, not all accident attorneys possess the knowledge and familiarity necessary to litigate a complicated bus accident lawsuit. There are major distinctions between bus accident cases and those involving cars and motorcycle crashes owned and operated by individuals. These differences include special tort liability issues, bus industry business practices, insurance requirements, and safety and training regulations that apply to the busing industry. An experienced bus accident lawyer is essential to a successful outcome to your lawsuit.
Special Liability Issues
Under various laws, a provider of public transportation, known as a “common carrier”, is held to an elevated standard of care in protecting its passengers as compared to a “private carrier”. Generally, all buses are “common carriers” with the exception of chartered buses which are “private carriers”. A common carrier is required to act with the utmost care, skill, and diligence to protect the safety of its passengers; however, a private carrier of passengers must act with only reasonable care and diligence. An accomplished bus accident attorney is proficient at demonstrating the failure of a negligent bus company to meet and maintain the requisite standard of care.
The laws in Pennsylvania and New Jersey also provide for special considerations if you are involved in a bus accident involving a municipal mass transit vehicle. When you are injured as a result of an accident involving a public bus or your child is injured or is killed in a school bus accident, the Pennsylvania and New Jersey Tort Claim Acts may provide special requirements or limitations in bringing a lawsuit against the municipality or other government entity, such as the school district. Navigating the complexities of the laws designed to protect the government’s “sovereign immunity”, skilled litigators such as the Philadelphia bus accident attorneys at Messa & Associates will diligently provide effective legal representation and pursue your right to full compensation for your injuries.
Bus Industry Business Practices & Insurance Requirements
The busing industry, like any other industry, has its own way of conducting business, conforming to governmental regulations and maintaining records. Because of its regulation by federal and state government agencies, bus companies must produce and maintain documentation of everything from employee medical and psychological exams to drivers’ training and criminal reports, to equipment acquisition, maintenance and disposal records. Every service call, repair and part replacement is recorded by private maintenance companies. Every violation of safety requirements is documented by the regulating entities. In addition, due to the nature and extent of potential liability, insurance policies for commercial passenger vehicles have no semblance to the common automobile policy most motor vehicle accidents attorneys see every day. When representing a client injured in a bus accident, a personal injury attorney must sift through piles and piles of documents and electronic records that don’t normally come into play in the typical motor vehicle accident. The bus companies have experienced bus accident attorneys on their side with intimate knowledge of what those documents say and how to use them to their advantage. Messa & Associates and our team of competent bus accident attorneys are just as prepared to fight on your behalf.
Complex Federal and State Regulation of the Busing Industry
Specific federal and state laws are in place to regulate the safe maintenance and operation of buses traveling throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Federal safety laws, such as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, are complex and govern many aspects of passenger busing, as well as commercial trucking. These regulations cover such things as the qualifications and licensing of bus drivers, maintenance of equipment and reporting requirements. Likewise, municipalities have their own ordinances and regulations that govern public mass transit systems. Pennsylvania and New Jersey laws govern the operation and maintenance of school buses, including such things as which safety mechanisms a bus must have, which persons are allowed to ride on the bus, and how other drivers are to interact with a school bus (i.e. stopping for a school bus). Understanding, interpreting and applying the matrix of applicable laws and regulations to your particular situation requires experienced bus accident attorneys such as those at Messa & Associates.
Call the Philadelphia Bus Accident Lawyers at Messa & Associates
If you or a family member has been seriously injured or someone close to you has died in a busing accident, contact the compassionate, capable Philadelphia bus accident attorneys of Messa & Associates. With offices in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, our personal injury lawyers offer exceptional legal representation by experienced bus accident attorneys with first-hand knowledge of the intricacies of pursuing a claim for injuries sustained in a bus crash. Our diligent bus accident lawyers will carefully analyze the facts of your case, identify all potential responsible parties and develop the strongest litigation strategy to maximize your compensation for your injuries. Call toll free at 1-877-MessaLaw to set up a consultation at no cost, or submit a free online inquiry.