A school bus accident on a Baltimore County road earlier this month led to at least ten middle school students escaping from emergency exits. The accident happened after the driver reportedly lost control of the bus, causing it to flip off of the side of the road.
The single vehicle accident occurred at nearly 7:30 a.m., and sent the bus nearly end-over-end. As a result, windows were smashed and a tree pierced the front left wheel well. It reportedly finally came to rest on its left side, nearly on its roof, in a gully full of brambles, trees, vines and other vegetation, its door pointed skyward.
The accident reportedly sent the bus driver and five students to local hospitals for treatment of minor injuries, according to a Fire Department spokesperson. According to a later statement from a school official, the worst injury sustained was reportedly a sprained ankle. The cause of the accident is unknown, and remains under investigation. Authorities plan to review coverage from the bus’s three onboard cameras, among other evidence.
According to one article on the subject of school bus safety, large school buses do not have seat belts because the vehicles are specifically designed to absorb impact if a child was thrust forward in a crash: “They are close together, high and padded…This safety system is called compartmentalization.”
Additionally, according to a study done by the Alabama State Department of Education, it would cost between $32 and $38 million to install seat belts on all the state’s buses, while only saving one life. Smaller buses, where the use of seat belts would affect safety, are required to be equipped with them, according to federal standards.
Fortunately, in this case the children suffered only minor injuries. That is not always the case, however. Just last May, the Baltimore Board of Estimates agreed to a $100,000 settlement regarding the death of a young special needs student who was killed while riding a school bus.
If a child is injured in the course of a bus accident due to negligent driving of the bus driver, you may be able to bring a personal injury claim against the school in order to receive compensation for your child’s injuries. When a child dies due to the negligence or recklessness of another person or entity, the child’s parents may be entitled to recover for the loss of the child and the loss of the child’s love, affection, and companionship. This is known as a wrongful death case. Furthermore, if the child suffered following the injury until the moment of death, a case known as a survival action may also be brought.
If your child was injured or killed as a result of someone else’s negligence, you should contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC. Our lawyers have extensive experience advocating on behalf of individuals and families who have suffered in Maryland due to someone else’s negligence. We have represented families who have lost loved ones as a result of wrongful deaths caused by auto accidents, hospital negligence, medical malpractice, and other traumatic events. If you believe that you have lost a loved one due to the negligent or wrongful actions of someone else, please contact us by calling 1-800-654-1949 or through our website in order to schedule your free initial consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Four Year Old Maryland Boy Accidentally Shoots Self, Maryland Accident Law Blog, published October 4, 2013
Overuse of Cardiac Stents Associated with Serious Injuries and Death, Maryland Accident Law Blog, published October 1, 2013