Our firm has particular expertise in claims for accidents on buses. We have successfully represented hundreds of clients in these specialist claims. You can read some of our recent case studies such as suing a bus company for an emergency stop accident and passenger injured when bus swerved to avoid collision.
Buses are a cheap, convenient and generally safe mode of transport for millions of UK commuters and members of the public. The size of most buses and coaches means that severe injuries from accidents are rare. Buses are however often crammed full of people, many of them standing and getting on and off at regular intervals. The majority of accidents are the result of driver error, causing passengers to lose their balance and fall. Bus companies owe a duty of care to their passengers, and are responsible for their vehicles being driven with reasonable care and skill. If a passenger is injured on a bus therefore, they will often be able to claim compensation from the bus operator.
· Driver using excessive speed
· Driver braking too hard
· Driver pulling away from stop too quickly
· Driver swerving to avoid collision
· Collisions with other vehicles
· Collisions with obstacles in the road
When a bus driver is not paying attention they will often be forced to brake late and hard to avoid a collision. They may also be driving too fast, possibly to make up time on their route. When a bus brakes sharply, standing passengers may be thrown forward, striking other passengers, the back of seats (when they are sitting down), or on board ticket machines. Passengers may also lose their balance and fall while climbing stairs to the upper level, otherwise a person may be injured if the bus pulls away while they are trying to board it or get off.
The most common form of injury among bus passengers is whiplash, where a sudden jerk over stretches and strains soft tissues in the neck. Whiplash may be the result of a driver turning a sharp corner too fast, or excessive acceleration or braking. On both buses and coaches, luggage on seats or in overhead compartments may be thrown around, striking and injuring passengers. Common injuries include cuts and bruises, particularly to the head, as passengers are struck by falling objects, collide with one another or fall onto hard surfaces in the bus. Elderly passengers especially may break bones in falls, as their bone structure is relatively weaker than the average adult.
Hundreds of bus passengers are injured each year, through no fault of their own, and often the bus company will be legally liable. If the bus driver has exposed passengers to a foreseeable risk of injury, and injuries have occurred, the bus operator will be held legally responsible for the behaviour of its employee. It is important that injured passengers, or those with them, note the bus and route number, as well as the time of the accident. The bus ticket should be retained as proof of travel, and where possible witness details should be taken from fellow passengers. Compensation awards will reflect pain and suffering, as well as the financial implications of an injury, including loss of earnings and the cost of medical treatment. Before you report your personal injury on bus contact us for advice.