California bus accident raises important legal questions

2020-09-02T07:20:38+00:00January 24th, 2019|

A single vehicle bus accident on Highway 101 in California sent seven passengers to the hospital. While police thankfully described the injuries as minor, it is sometimes hard to tell the full extent of a person’s injuries until well after an accident. Some of those transported to the hospital did complain of pain.

The driver of the bus, who worked for Amtrak and was taking passengers to a train station, was arrested at the scene of the accident. Police indicated that she was operating while under the influence of a controlled substance, although police did not specify what that controlled substance was.

According to reports, the bus was traveling at highway speeds when it just went off the road and then left the shoulder of the road. The bus hit a tree and went careening down the side of a hill, landing on its side. The bus accident happened in the early morning hours. Police are continuing to investigate the accident, as there could be multiple factors in play.

Typically in single vehicle accidents, the question of compensation is straightforward since the accident was, in all likelihood, the fault of the injured driver. However, the case of a single vehicle bus accident is a bit different.

Under the law, the driver and her company had a responsibility to transport their passengers from point A to point B safely. As the bus driver apparently failed in this obligation, the injured passengers may have a right to pursue compensation from the driver and Amtrak for things like medical bills and lost wages, as well as pain and suffering and the emotional distress associated with being inside a bus when it rolled.

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