Articles Posted in Bus Accident

Drivers share the road with all types of vehicles, ranging from smaller sedans to pick-up trucks, motorcycles, buses, and more. Because vehicles range in size, length, the number of passengers that they can safely hold, and safety features, it can be hard to predict exactly how much damage may result from an accident. In addition, the conditions of the road, the negligence or recklessness of drivers, and other factors all contribute to the level of harm that may result from a truck accident. In addition, changes in seasons can alter the type of vehicles we commonly see on the road, including whether there are many school buses on the road. According to National Safety Council and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, school bus-related accidents killed 54 people nationwide in 2020.

In a recent news report from South Carolina, a two-car crash resulted in the death of the driver of a pick-up truck. A school bus was hit by a Chevrolet Silverado that was heading southbound. Seven students were on the bus and no other injuries were reported. Local authorities are investigating the accident further, and fault had not yet been established.

Both trucks and buses can range in size and are often times larger in length and weight. These are often heavier-weight vehicles, requiring that their drivers be equipped with the knowledge and skill needed to safely maneuver the vehicle. These two types of vehicles share a similarity in that it can be difficult in some situations for the drivers of these vehicles to see in their blind spots. Blind spots are essentially the areas that a driver is unable to see when looking in their mirrors or when they turn their head to check their surroundings. In addition, poor weather conditions, obstruction by the sun, passengers or even objects can also add to obstructing a driver’s view.

Traveling by bus is often an easy, affordable, and safe way of getting around. When you choose to travel by bus—whether on your daily commute or over the weekend to see friends or family—you have a reasonable expectation of safety. In addition, the driver of the bus has an obligation to operate the vehicle in the safest way possible, and to not drive recklessly or negligently while transporting passengers.

According to a recent local news report, 27 people were injured in a bus accident. Local authorities responded to the crash, which took place near Kingsville, Maryland. Once officials arrived on the scene, they found a megabus that had rolled off I-95. The tire on the passenger side of the bus was mostly ripped off because of the way the bus landed on its side in a nearby ravine. Following the accident, it appeared that the bus’s windshield was kicked open to help passengers evacuate. Luckily, no other vehicles were involved in the crash. Fifteen of the 27 who were injured—including the driver of the bus—were transported to local hospitals. The company operating the megabus noted that it would be conducting a full review of the circumstances surrounding the crash.

What do Maryland Bus Accident Victims Need to Prove?

Although bus accidents take place less frequently than other types of vehicle accidents, it does not make them any less dangerous. When these accidents take place, they can often be devastating and result in significant injuries. Following a major bus accident, you may be considering filing a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation for your injuries. As a potential plaintiff, you must first consider who you will sue. If you took a bus with a large commercial bus company, you may consider suing the bus company and the bus driver, depending on the circumstances of your case. If you were on a city bus, however, the circumstances may change and there may be special rules when bringing a lawsuit against the town or agency responsible for the operation of the bus. Establishing who the lawsuit will be primarily directed toward is an important question, and one worthy of discussion with an experienced personal injury lawyer at the beginning of the lawsuit filing process.

Although most people think of accidents as between two cars, buses or commuter trains are often involved in major collisions also. When the Maryland accident involves a municipal bus associated with public transportation provided by the state as the at-fault party, however, there are a number of special requirements that potential plaintiffs must understand and keep in mind when pursuing their claim in court.

According to a recent local news report, a Metro bus was part of a multiple vehicle car accident. Local authorities reported that the Metro bus was proceeding southbound when it lost control and veered into one car, which caused a chain reaction with several other vehicles. The front end of the bus eventually crashed into a Honda Pilot, where it came to a stop. Pictures of the scene posted by local fire and EMS officials show a maroon SUV trapped under the Metro bus and at least one other vehicle with significant front-end damage. First responders arrived on the scene and six patients required evaluation, including two who had serious but non-life-threatening injuries. Four of the people involved were transported to local hospitals for further treatment. The accident remains under investigation.

If you have been involved in a similar accident where a Metro, municipal bus, or commuter train is the at-fault party in an accident, you may be considering filing a personal injury lawsuit to recoup compensation for your injuries or damaged property. To bring a successful claim following this kind of accident, potential plaintiffs would be suing the Maryland Transit Administration or one of its employees, which is essentially a lawsuit against the State of Maryland.

Many Maryland and Washington D.C. residents count on public transportation in their daily lives for work and recreation. At a minimum, we expect that public transportation will be safe and reliable. Unfortunately, this was not the case when a metro bus crashed earlier this month, causing significant injuries.

In an event that emergency crews described as a “mass casualty incident,” at least 13 people were injured. Although reports on the extent of the injuries vary, it appears at this time that at least two people were seriously hurt. About seven people had less serious injuries, and one individual refused treatment altogether.

At this time, the cause of the bus accident is unknown. In many cases, however, when a bus crashes, someone is legally responsible. The people injured in the crash—including any people who might have suffered an emotional injury from the trauma of the incident—may have a claim for monetary compensation against those responsible for the accident.

Earlier this month, an appellate court in Nebraska issued an opinion in a case arising out of a bus accident in which the city government named as the defendant admitted liability but argued that the damages ordered by the court were too high. In the case, Moreno v. City of Gering, the appellate court ultimately determined that the lower court was correct in its ruling, and it affirmed the verdict in favor of the plaintiff.

The Facts of the Case

The plaintiff, Moreno, was injured in an accident involving a county-owned bus and a city-owned fire truck. Evidently, Moreno was riding on the bus when it was struck by a fire truck being operated by a volunteer fire-fighter. As a result of the collision, Moreno, who had a pre-existing medical condition affecting her back, suffered serious injuries. A few months after the accident, she had a cervical fusion surgery performed.

At the trial, the city and county admitted that they were each liable to Moreno, but they argued that the surgery was not necessary. To support their claim, they pointed to recent news articles that the doctor who had recently performed the surgery performed a record number of similar surgeries. The defendants presented a medical expert who testified that the surgery was unnecessary given Moreno’s injuries, and that the surgeon who performed it was “a criminal.” There was also evidence presented that the surgeon had been suspended due to the number of medical malpractice cases brought against him.

Continue reading ›

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.

Continue reading ›

A man and his son sued the District of Columbia for injuries sustained in a bus accident in Prince George’s County, Maryland. The lawsuit asserted vicarious liability against the District for the alleged negligence of its employee, the bus driver. The Court of Appeals of Maryland affirmed the trial court’s judgment for the defendant in District of Columbia v. Singleton, 41 A.3d 717 (Md. 2012), finding that the plaintiffs did not produce sufficient evidence to support a theory of res ipsa loquitur.

The accident occurred on June 20, 2008, when Wayne Singleton and his two sons, ages six and eight, were passengers on a bus for a day trip to the Six Flags amusement park, sponsored by the District’s Department of Parks and Recreation. On the return trip to DC, the bus apparently went off the road and crashed into a tree. Singleton and his eight year-old son, Jaron, sustained injuries in the crash. Singleton was asleep when the bus went off the road, allegedly waking up while it was “airborne,” and Jaron had no memory of the accident. Both suffered minor injuries.

Singleton filed suit against the District in January 2009 on his own behalf and on behalf of Jaron. Because neither plaintiff had personal knowledge of the circumstances of the accident, they relied on the theory of res ipsa loquitur. This translates literally as “the thing speaks for itself.”

Continue reading ›

A pickup truck, whose driver was allegedly driving under the influence, caused an accident with a school bus on the evening of November 22, 2011. Twenty people, including fifteen students from Great Mills High School, were treated at a nearby hospital for injuries. Fortunately, no fatalities or serious injuries were reported. The bus driver sustained back injuries.

At about 9:23 p.m. that night, 45 year-old John Patrick Kravats allegedly ran a stop sign while another car, a Ford Fusion, was in the intersection. Kravats’ truck hit the Fusion, sending it into the school bus’ lane. The school bus, carrying members and coaches of the Great Hills High School Girls’ Basketball team, struck either the pickup truck or the Fusion and went off the road and into the woods. Local news coverage showed the bus wedged between trees in a wooded area just off the road.

Witnesses credited the school bus driver with heroic driving maneuvers that prevented the bus from tipping over and prevented serious injuries. The bus driver, another adult, and fifteen students were taken to the hospital. The driver of the Fusion and a 13 year-old passenger were also taken to the hospital.

Police at the scene arrested Kravats for driving under the influence. Local news discovered that Kravats is listed on the Maryland sex offender registry because of a conviction for sexual abuse of a minor. While this is of little to no relevance in determining Kravats’ liability for the accident, it will not help him in the criminal case for DUI.

Based on news reports of the accident scene, it appears that Kravats’ truck did not directly strike the school bus. The school bus may have hit the truck, and it was the efforts of the school bus driver to avoid tipping over that took the bus off the road and into the woods. A personal injury attorney would therefore need to examine causation, to see if Kravats would be legally liable for injuries to school bus passengers. It seems that he should be liable for injuries in both the Fusion and the school bus.

Continue reading ›

According to Maryland lawmaker James Malone, the state’s law regarding handheld cell phones while driving is not tough enough. Delegate Malone, a Democrat from Baltimore County, is supporting a bill that would make using a handheld cell phone while operating a motor vehicle a primary offense. Hopefully, such a bill will stop more people from distracted driving with their phone or PDA so that they don’t cause a Maryland car crash.

Under the current law, talking on a handheld phone while driving is a secondary offense, which means that the ban can only be enforced if the driver is being cited for another violation. Also, although drivers are banned from sending text messages, they are allowed to retrieve and read them. Malone and others also want to make the text messaging ban tougher. Sen. Jim Brochin, D-Baltimore County is sponsoring a bill in the Senate that would make it illegal to also read texts while driving.

According to the Maryland State Highway Administration, in the past five years, there have been over 380 distracted driving fatalities in the state. Distracted driving, as described by US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, is an epidemic. It was the cause of 5500 fatalities in the US in 2009—yet many people, when they can get away with it, continue to text, talk on the phone, send emails, surf the Internet, or play games on their cell phone while driving. Although talking on a handheld device is not safe either, at least the driver has both hands on the steering wheel.

A distracted driver can be held liable for Baltimore County personal injury or wrongful death if his/her failure to pay attention caused a catastrophic Maryland car accident. There are steps that an experienced Baltimore personal injury law firm can take to prove that a driver was distracted when the Maryland traffic crash happened. For example, there may be phone records that can be obtained to match up when the crash happened and when a call was taking place. A witness may have observed the distracted driver texting.

Md. Bill to Tighten Cell Phone Use While Driving, ABC News/AP, February 16, 2011
Distracted driving epidemic: U.S. Transportation Secretary LaHood calls issue a ‘personal crusade’, Sea Coast Online, October 24, 2010
Related Web Resources:
Cellphone Laws, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

Related Blog Posts:
US DOT Holds Second Annual Distracted Driving Summit in Washington DC, Washington DC Injury Lawyer Blog, September 22, 2010
Maryland Injury News: Distracted Driving Blamed for Increasing Number of Fatal Teenage Automobile Accidents, Maryland Car Accident Attorney Blog, July 17, 2010
Maryland Auto Injury News: Distracted Driving Blamed in Baltimore Woman’s Death following Fatal Howard County Crash, Maryland Car Accident Attorney Blog, June 26, 2010

Continue reading ›

Maryland State Police are investigating a Frederick County traffic crash between two school buses onThursday that they say went unreported. A number of school children reportedly sustained injuries.

According to the authorities, a Littlestown School District bus collided with another district bus at around 3pm. A number of third graders that had been headed back to Littlestown Rolling Acres Elementary after a field trip to Washington DC were later taken to hospitals by their parents. Injuries sustained ranged from minor bruises to possible bone fractures and concussions. One student lost a tooth. Another student suffered a bloody nose.

The school bus drivers reportedly discussed the collision with each other and notified district staff about the incident before leaving the Maryland bus accident site. At the time, the bus drivers reportedly did not realize that any of the students had been hurt.

According to the Gettysburg Times, a number of the students’ parents have expressed dismay with how the Maryland school bus accident was handled. They are wondering why police and ambulances were not called to the crash site immediately, whether the bus drivers had been given a plan for what to do during a traffic, and, if so, then why the plan wasn’t followed.

One parent says that chaperones who were on the bus when the crash happened were surprised when the bus driver resumed driving before help could arrive. Another parent says that someone on the bus called for help but that somebody else cancelled the request. Someone else says that one of the bus drivers had been tailgating. Parents were reportedly told that it was up to them to determine whether their child needed medical care and to make sure that he/she received it.

Buses collide, pupils injured, Gettysburg Times, October 22, 2010
Investigation continues into school bus crash near Frederick, WTOP, October 23, 2010
Related Web Resource:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts

Continue reading ›

Contact Information