Public transportation is an economical option many commuters in Illinois enjoy. However, because buses are more massive and carry more occupants than cars, a bus accident can be catastrophic.

If you or a loved one suffered harm in a public transportation wreck, you should contact a Normal bus accident lawyer to discuss your legal rights. An experienced injury attorney could review your case and explain your eligibility for financial compensation.

Government-Owned Buses

A city or county owns municipal buses, and a school districts or their contractors owns school buses. Passengers injured in bus crashes involving government-owned vehicles must file a claim and possibly a lawsuit against the government entity, and they would likely benefit from a Normal lawyers to guide them.

Typically, to bring a claim against a government entity, you have a one-year statute of limitations, instead of the more common two-year statute of limitations you have against private parties in Illinois. If you do not have a lawsuit on file before the statute of limitations runs, you will likely be forever barred from bringing your claim. An experienced Normal attorney can advise you as to what statute of limitations would apply to your specific case

Municipal buses

It is statistically safer to ride a municipal bus than to commute by car. However, there are some common causes of local bus wrecks, including:

  • An impaired driver, who should be tested immediately for drugs and alcohol in the event of a crash,
  • A driver in a hurry to keep the municipal bus schedule may place a boarding or disembarking passenger in a dangerous position,
  • A driver who has worked overtime and may be suffering from fatigue.

School buses

The State of Illinois places a high value on the competency of school bus drivers. Those entrusted with transporting children in a school bus must maintain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and a state-sponsored School Bus Permit. A driver must also carry a federal CDL School Bus Endorsement permit for which the driver must:

  • Be 21 or older
  • Carry a valid driver’s license and CDL license
  • Pass both a written Passenger Endorsement and School Bus Endorsement exam
  • Pass a driving test
  • Hold a driving record without repeated offenses concerning traffic laws

Commercial Bus Lines

Common interstate carriers transport people all over the country, including to and from Normal, Illinois. A company is subject to lawsuits for wrongful death and injuries if the company or its driver is found at fault. An experienced attorney in Normal could help build a bus wreck case within the two-year filing period.

Other Public Transportation

Passengers ride buses other than those maintained by common interstate carriers and government entities. Passengers ride in shuttle buses, church buses, and charter or sightseeing buses. These claims fall under negligence and personal injury laws. A Normal accident attorney could help a client build a case based on the specific circumstances of a bus accident.

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Contributory Negligence

A bus driver has a duty to transport passengers safely, just as the driver of a motor vehicle must drive carefully. Therefore, a jury will look at the percentage of fault of both the claimant and the defendant. In Normal bus accident cases, a claimant asking for compensation may not be found more than 49 percent liable for contributing to the accident.

Get Help from a Normal Bus Accident Attorney

A Normal bus accident lawyer could advise you if you are injured in a collision involving a large, interstate common carrier, a municipality, a school district, a church, or private, chartered transportation. With the help of a dedicated attorney, you could be compensated for the cost of your medical bills, lost wages, pain, suffering, and mental anguish. Call today for a free consultation about your options.