The Atlanta Journal Constitution website reported that metro Atlanta school buses have been involved in more than 700 accidents since July 1, 2016, according to the Georgia Department of Education. That’s equivalent to four accidents a day. Record indicate that 302 students and drivers were injured in Georgia bus crashes this year through November.
Recently, the national news featured reports on a crash in Chattanooga, Tenn., where six Chattanooga elementary school children were killed when a school bus driver lost control of the bus. The driver, who reportedly was driving above the speed limit, was charged vehicular homicide. The family of one of the students killed has filed a lawsuit claiming wrongful death against the bus service, manufacturer, and driver.
Thousands of students ride school buses every day. School transportation vehicles have long been considered insufficient in safety features, such as seat belts for the students. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued statistics demonstrating that from 2005-through 2014, nationally there were 1,191 school-transportation-related accidents. 1,332 people killed—an average of 133 fatalities a year. Passengers on school transportation vehicles accounted for 8 percent of the fatalities, and pedestrians, bicyclists, etc., accounted for 21 percent of the fatalities.
When you entrust your child to the safekeeping of school transportation services, you expect your child to arrive at school unharmed. Even though Georgia requires bus drivers to be licensed, pass a knowledge test, a physical, a bus driving test, and a background check, the safety of the students is still subject to driver skill and alertness, vehicle operation and fitness, and the vagaries of traffic.
If you or your child have been injured as a passenger in a school bus accident or as a pedestrian hit by a school bus, you can file a claim against the driver or owner of the bus and receive compensation for medical costs and pain and suffering as well as wages you may have lost. Should the accident result in a fatality, your or your family may be entitled to wrongful death damages.
In Georgia a wrongful death occurs when someone dies as a result of another person’s negligence. A claim for wrongful death can be made against persons and organizations, such as a business, that behave in a reckless or intentionally negligent manner.
The lawyers of Angell Law Firm are experts in personal injury law, which is the only kind of case they handle. If you or your child have been hurt and injured in a bus accident you may be entitled to damages. The Angell Law Firm will advise you on your legal case. Call (770) 217-4954 today to discuss your case. The consultation is free.
The Angell Law Firm is located in Atlanta and serves Chatham County, including Savannah; Clarke County including Athens; Cobb County, including Marietta; DeKalb County, including Decatur and Stone Mountain; Fulton County, including Atlanta, College Park, and Roswell; Gwinnett County including Buford, Lawrenceville, and Norcross; and Oconee County, including Watkinsville.