Bus Accident Attorneys in Houston, Texas
30 Years of Experience Helping People in Texas Recover and Reclaim Their Lives After a Bus Accident.
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Just like any other vehicle, buses can be involved in sudden and unexpected accidents. Bus accidents can have severe consequences, both in the immediate aftermath of the crash and in the long term. Damaged vehicle parts, lost wages, and injuries that become more severe over time are all potential outcomes of being involved in a bus accident.
Navigating the process of seeking compensation after an accident can be challenging and frustrating, as insurance companies have vast resources at their disposal to minimize payouts and waste your time. A Houston auto accident attorney will shield you from insurance companies and advocate for your interests.
What Is a Bus Accident?
A bus accident refers to any incident involving a bus. This can include collisions with other vehicles, pedestrians, or stationary objects. It can also include accidents such as rollovers, fires, or mechanical failures.
The following vehicles all qualify as buses:
- Greyhound buses
- School buses
- Houston city buses
- Charter tour buses
- Church buses
- Airport and car rental shuttle buses
If you or a loved one has been involved in a bus accident in Texas, you are not alone. The Texas Department of Transportation released a crash data report in 2021 concluding that bus accidents in Texas were involved in:
- 2,747 incidents of property damage without injuries.
- 302 incidents with non-incapacitating injuries.
- 88 crashes with incapacitating, life altering injuries.
- 21 fatalities.
Common Injuries from Bus Accidents in Texas
There are a wide range of injuries that can result from a bus accident, but some injuries include:
- Lacerations and bruises.
- Whiplash or other neck injuries occurring from the jerking motion of a collision.
- Fractured or broken bones.
- Back and spinal cord injuries, ranging from sprains and strains to more serious injuries such as herniated discs.
- Head injuries, including concussions for traumatic brain injuries (TBIs).
Not all injuries will be clear immediately following a bus accident. We recommend going to see a medical professional as soon as possible to assess your injuries. Some injuries come back weeks, months, and even years later to haunt you. By that point, you may be out of options for seeking compensation.
Causes of Bus Accidents
The cause of a bus accident can be incredibly nuanced, and usually requires an extensive investigation to fully understand. There may be multiple reasons for a single accident. Some of the most common causes include:
- Driver error such as driving under the influence, distracted driving, or failing to obey traffic laws.
- Mechanical failure due to a malfunctioning part or lack of maintenance.
- Poor road conditions such as potholes, debris, or poor visibility.
- Weather conditions particularly if the bus driver does not adjust their driving accordingly.
- Unsafe bus design.
- Inadequate driver training.
The moments after any accident can be confusing and painful, particularly if you have been seriously injured. The last thing you may be thinking of is examining the scene of the accident and taking pictures. An experienced Houston auto accident lawyer will investigate the scene of an accident for you, in some cases hiring an accident reconstruction expert to better understand what happened.
Bus Accident Laws in Texas
The laws surrounding Houston bus accidents are complex, and different aspects apply according to the circumstances of your case. However, there are a few important factors to consider when building a personal injury case.
• Statute of Limitations
Texas has a two-year statute of limitations on personal injury claims. In most cases, a lawsuit must be filed within two years of the accident. This can complicate a case for those who don’t seek medical attention immediately following a wreck and find that their injuries resurface over time. Always get medical attention after any accident, as you might not immediately notice some injuries.
• Fault-Based Insurance
Texas has a fault-based system of personal injury recovery. The party found to be at-fault for an accident will be responsible for compensating the injured party. As such, the state has a required minimum coverage amount. People can choose to increase their insurance beyond the required minimums. If the total damages from an accident exceed the at-fault party’s coverage, they may have to pay the rest out of pocket. In cases like these, an auto accident attorney would negotiate with both insurance companies and opposing counsel.
The required minimums in Texas are:
- $30,000 per injured person.
- Up to $60,000 per accident.
- $25,000 for property damage per accident.
The required commercial liability insurance minimums in Texas depend on the type of bus and how many passengers can be carried. An experienced Houston attorney will be able to determine how much insurance was required for the bus involved in your accident.
• Liability Laws
Liability for car accidents in Texas is determined by who is at fault. It is possible for all parties involved, including the injured party, to be partially liable for an accident. The facts surrounding the case will establish who is at fault, and to what extent. If the injured party is found to be somewhat at fault, their compensation may be reduced.
The insurance company and the car accident lawyer will complete separate investigations to understand, among other things:
- Negligence of all parties, including how the accident could have been avoided.
- Recklessness of all parties.
- If intentional misconduct was involved.
- If a defective part or product from the vehicle is to blame.
How Can a Bus Accident Lawyer Help?
If you or a loved one were seriously injured in a bus accident, the last thing you need to worry about is fighting the insurance company over fair compensation. Insurance companies will often try to pressure you into accepting their first – and lowest – offer. This tactic works because people recovering from a bus crash often feel overwhelmed by the prospect of going back and forth with the insurance company while their medical and personal bills pile up.
By hiring an experienced Houston bus accident attorney, you have someone in your corner to handle the insurance companies for you. Our attorneys have been working in Houston for over 30 years. With this experience comes an in-depth understanding of the strategies employed by insurance companies, what is needed for your case to be as successful as possible, and the local legal system. We’ve seen cases like yours before, and we’ve battled many of the same insurance companies.
Your bus accident attorney should keep you informed of the entire process while they shield you from insurance companies and/or opposing counsel. They should listen to your concerns and answer your questions. The months after a bus accident don’t have to be confusing and overwhelming.
In addition to keeping you updated and informed, auto accident lawyers:
- Gather and examine relevant evidence such as police reports, photographs of the scene and your injuries, medical records, and witness statements. This sometimes includes hiring an expert to reconstruct the accident to determine liability.
- Establish causation, liability, and fault according to the circumstances of the crash and laws surrounding liability. This could be the bus driver, the bus company, a third-party driver, or a government entity.
- Assess the full extent of your damages.
- Handle insurance paperwork and legal procedures on your behalf.
- Build a strong case based on all the details of the case, including contacting relevant medical professionals.
- Negotiate with insurance companies and/or opposing counsel for fair compensation that covers all of your damages.
- Represent you in court, if necessary.
Reaching out to a bus accident attorney as soon as possible is a crucial step in putting your life back on track. The more time that passes, the harder it is to gather evidence and build a strong case. If you wait too long, the bus company may have already sent the bus for repairs, or replaced it entirely – effectively wiping away the evidence you need.
Because You Deserve Compensation For Your Injuries
SUCCESSFUL VERDICTS & SETTLEMENTS THAT OUR FIRM HAS ACHIEVED
Why Choose DeSimone Law Office?
Our injury attorneys are well versed and specialize in vehicle accident laws as well as personal injury and wrongful death claims.
If we cannot recover damages for your accident injury or wrongful death claim, you pay us nothing.
When you call DeSimone Law Office you will speak to an attorney directly – not through a paralegal or secretary.