Bus Accident Law



Bus Accident Law falls under common carrier law, because buses offer transportation services to people as part of a business. A common carrier is an individual or business that transports people, goods, or services for a fee, and offers its services to the general public under license or authority provided by a regulatory governmental body. Common carriers can be private companies or public entities. These laws are regulated on the local, state and federal level. The Federal government regulates common carriers that transport passengers or cargo across state lines under the Interstate Commerce Act, and individual states regulate travel within a state.

Other modes of transportation that fall under the category of common carrier include school buses, taxis, trains, light-rail, trolleys, cable cars, tour boats, cruise ships, ferries, airplanes, airport shuttles, and, in some states, limousines.

Common carriers have a legal responsibility to show a higher duty of care since they offer their services to the public for a fee. While non-commercial drivers must operate under reasonable care, a common carrier must use the highest degree of care and vigilance for the safety of its passengers, and the public. Failure to adhere to that higher duty of care can be considered negligence. Therefore, if you are a bus passenger and injured as the result of an accident, special rules apply.

If a bus accident is due to the negligence of the carrier; such as speeding, fatigue, maintenance failures, tire failures, or inadequate bus driver training; the carrier is liable for damages under personal injury or wrongful death tort law. When minor children, ill or disabled persons are injured as passengers on a bus, special rules may apply as well.

It is important to note that because many common carriers are governmental agencies, usually very specific and limited time frames apply for filing a claim for these types of cases. This time period is called a statute of limitations. In addition, with governmental entities, there may also be special notices that must be filed within a certain time period before filing a legal claim. Therefore, it is advisable if you or a family member has been injured due to a bus accident, that you consult with an attorney experienced in common carrier law.

To consult Transportation laws and regulations in your State visit our Department of Transportation by State page.

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Articles About Bus Accidents

  • A Deadly Bus Crash Can Prove Catastrophic
    Because of the way bus seating is designed, passengers on buses have far less chance of being injured or killed than drivers and passengers in other vehicles involved. A research study by the National Transportation Safety Board revealed that in 2009 (last available data) about 5.7 people in other vehicles died in a bus accident for every bus passenger.
  • Uber Accidents: Do You Have a Personal Injury Case?
    Ridesharing is a growing trend. The popularity of ridesharing networks like Uber has skyrocketed in recent years. In fact, Uber’s services are now available in 50 countries, with 8.1 million Uber users and more than 50,000 new drivers added monthly.
  • How Louisiana Insurance Companies Pay Damages in a Car Wreck
    Insurance companies in Louisiana, including Baton Rouge, Look at many claims in different ways. Here are some secrets of how a car insurance company pays a claim in Louisiana.
  • How to Claim Compensation for a Soft Tissue Injury
    Soft tissue injury or whiplash refers mainly to injuries which involve the neck and shoulders, suffered by hundreds of road users every single day. It's most common in rear-end collisions but can occur in front-end collisions and other types of accidents as well. If a whiplash injury happens to you, the law says you have a right to compensation.
  • 5 Things To Do When You’ve Been Involved in a Vehicle Accident
    Nearly 1.3 million people die - globally - in road accidents each year; that’s over 3,000 deaths per day, and over 20 million people are injured or disabled - 2.3 million of those injuries occurred in the US alone. Statistically speaking, you have a high likelihood of being in a car accident at some point in your lifetime (and some probability suggests that figure is 3-4 non-fatal accidents per lifespan - about once every 17.9 years).
  • How to Help Your Case for Settlement after a Car Accident in Louisiana
    If you have been in a car accident, you may still be recovering from your injuries, and perhaps you have had to take time off of work to recover. Maybe your injuries were serious enough that you cannot go back to work for some time, or are permanently disabled.
  • When Should an Accident Victim Contact a Lawyer?
    If you or your loved one has been in an accident, you’re understandably shaken up, hurt, confused and overwhelmed. You may be feeling vulnerable, too, wondering whether the accident warrants a call to a personal injury attorney or whether you should just let the insurance companies battle it out.
  • Why Shouldn't an Accident Victim Settle for the First Offer?
    There’s a common misconception out there that insurance company payouts cover all losses of an accident victim. This is simply not true.
  • How to Choose a Personal Injury Lawyer
    Most people don’t think too much about personal injury attorneys until they are in an accident. People get injured all the time in all kinds of ways, and in most cases those accidents are due to someone else’s negligence. Sometimes the resulting injuries are severe, and the recovery long. Injured people may miss work or become unable to work in the same field because of those injuries.
  • Injuries Caused by School Bus Drivers and How to Collect
    Students that ride on a bus often experience peaceful and non-eventful drives. However, there are some incidents that may transpire while in these vehicles. Of these, there are some accidents or collisions that occur where the young persons are injured.
  • All Motor Vehicles Law Articles

    Articles written by attorneys and experts worldwide discussing legal aspects related to Motor Vehicles Law including: auto dealer fraud, automobile accidents, automotive, bus accidents, lemon law, motor vehicle accidents, motorcycle accident, railroad accidents, rollover accident, traffic violations, trucking accident.

Bus Accident Law – US

  • Bus Driver Qualifications

    State and Federal governments establish bus driver qualifications and standards, which include a commercial driver’s license (CDL) with the proper endorsements. Many employers provide several weeks of training and help new employees obtain their CDL. Other employers prefer those with truck or other driving experience.

  • Bus Uniform Standards and Enhanced Safety Act of 2011

    Bus Uniform Standards and Enhanced Safety Act of 2011 or the BUSES Act of 2009 - Directs the Secretary of Transportation to issue regulations to require: (1) monitoring of the safety performance of motorcoach service providers and other commercial motor carriers of passengers; and (2) progressive interventions to correct unsafe practices, and if they are not corrected, an enforcement action. Authorizes the Secretary to organize special enforcement strike forces to target commercial motor vehicle operators when appropriate.

  • Commercial Driver's License Program (CDL/CDLIS)

    It is widely recognized that driving certain commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) requires special skills and knowledge. Prior to implementation of the Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Program, in a number of States and the District of Columbia, any person licensed to drive an automobile could also legally drive a tractor-trailer or a bus. Even in many of the states that did have a classified licensing system, a person was not skills tested in a representative vehicle. As a result, many drivers were operating motor vehicles that they may not have been qualified to drive. In addition, many drivers were able to obtain driver's licenses from more than one State and hide or spread convictions among several driving records and continue to drive.

  • Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is focused on reducing crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses.

  • Heavy Trucks, Buses, and Engines

    This page presents general information about heavy-duty highway engines, such as those used in trucks and buses, and their emissions. There is also information regarding EPA's diesel programs, regulations, and retrofit/rebuild programs.

  • Motor Vehicle Compliance and Safety (MCCS)

    Commercial motor vehicle (CMV) means any self-propelled or towed motor vehicle used on a highway in interstate commerce to transport passengers or property when the vehicle— (1) Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating, or gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight, of 4,536 kg (10,001 pounds) or more, whichever is greater; or (2) Is designed or used to transport more than 8 passengers (including the driver) for compensation; or (3) Is designed or used to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver, and is not used to transport passengers for compensation; or (4) Is used in transporting material found by the Secretary of Transportation to be hazardous under 49 U.S.C. 5103 and transported in a quantity requiring placarding under regulations prescribed by the Secretary under 49 CFR, subtitle B, chapter I, subchapter C

  • School Bus Stop Laws - AAA

    School bus laws by state.

  • Title 49 of the United States Code Motor Vehicle Safety

    The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has a legislative mandate under Title 49 of the United States Code, Chapter 301, Motor Vehicle Safety, to issue Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) and Regulations to which manufacturers of motor vehicle and equipment items must conform and certify compliance. FMVSS 209 was the first standard to become effective on March 1, 1967. A number of FMVSS became effective for vehicles manufactured on and after January 1, 1968. Subsequently, other FMVSS have been issued. New standards and amendments to existing standards are published in the Federal Register.

  • Title 92: Transportation, Section 456.40

    Traffic Safety (except hazardous materials) Part 456 Non-scheduled Bus Inspections

Bus Accident Law - Europe

  • Concessionary Bus Travel Act 2007 - United Kingdom

    The Concessionary Bus Travel Act provides that everyone aged 60 and over in England, and disabled people in England, will get free off peak travel on all local buses anywhere in England from April 2008. The existing statutory entitlement allows these groups to travel for free, but only on buses within their local authority area.

  • Driver Vehicle and Operator Policy Branch - United Kingdom

    The Department's Driver Vehicle and Operator Policy Branch deals with bus and coach issues through new policy and legislation monitoring and development. These pages are designed to give bus and coach operators and drivers, manufacturers, representative bodies, those involved at industry level and the travelling public useful information on the policies that are being developed and introduced by the Department.

  • International Carriage by Coach and Bus - EU

    The coach and bus transport sector needs to guarantee efficient, high-quality services: greater passenger comfort, right to information on fares, contractual terms, handling of complaints, mechanisms for resolving disputes, vehicles better adapted to the needs of persons with reduced mobility, etc. In terms of road safety, the fact is that Community legislation, together with technological advances, has resulted in ever safer vehicles. This trend is vital for transport by coach and bus.

  • Lorry and Bus Legislation - United Kingdom

    This site is designed to be a ‘first point of call’ for all government processes and information for commercial transport businesses in the United Kingdom.

Bus Accident Law - International

  • Motor Carriers - Canada

    Transport Canada's Motor Carrier Division is primarily responsible for facilitating the reduction of fatalities, injuries and crashes involving large commercial trucks and buses in Canada. The Motor Carrier Division works closely with the provinces, territories and industry on rules and regulations governing the safe operation of commercial vehicles, drivers and operators.

  • Passenger Transport Act 1990 No 39 - Australia

    All the provisions displayed in this version of the legislation have commenced.

  • Review of Bus Safety Issues - Canada

    School bus passenger protection.

Organizations Related to Bus Accidents

  • American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    AASHTO is a nonprofit, nonpartisan association representing highway and transportation departments in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. It represents all five transportation modes: air, highways, public transportation, rail, and water. Its primary goal is to foster the development, operation, and maintenance of an integrated national transportation system.

  • Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR)

    The Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR), established in 1988, has become recognized nationally and serves as an important resource for policymakers, transportation professionals, the education system, and the public. With emphasis on developing innovative, implementable solutions to transportation problems, CUTR provides high quality, objective transportation expertise in the form of technical support, policy analysis, and research support that translates directly into benefits for its project sponsors.

  • Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA)

    CVSA is an international not-for-profit organization comprised of local, state, provincial, territorial and federal motor carrier safety officials and industry representatives from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Our mission is to promote commercial motor vehicle safety and security by providing leadership to enforcement, industry and policy makers. CVSA member jurisdictions are represented by various Departments of Transportation, Public Utility and Service Commissions, State Police, Highway Patrols and Ministries of Transport. In addition, CVSA has several hundred associate members who are committed to helping the Alliance achieve its goals; uniformity, compatibility and reciprocity of commercial vehicle inspections, and enforcement activities throughout North America by individuals dedicated to highway safety and security.

  • Motor Carrier Research at TRB

    The mission of the Transportation Research Board is to provide leadership in transportation innovation and progress through research and information exchange, conducted within a setting that is objective, interdisciplinary, and multimodal. This page highlights recently released TRB reports, meeting announcements, requests for proposals, and other announcements related to motor carriers. In addition, it includes links to selected motor carrier research-related activities taking place at the federal and state levels, and within the academic and international transportation communities. Finally, this page also highlights and provides links to TRB programs and activities, which are the source of most of TRB’s motor carrier-related research products.

  • Multi-State Technical Assistance Program (MTAP)

    MTAP is a network of states which provides a forum for state level public transportation issues. MTAP provides the mechanism for its members to collectively pursue projects which provide wider benefits to each of them individually as well as to their federal and local counterparts. This collaboration has resulted in the development of standardized financial management guidelines, the MTAP Fax Alert network, a tool which provides immediate information and assistance from MTAP members to any problems or obstacles another member may be facing, and cooperatively sponsored training and conferences.

  • National Committee on Uniform Traffic Laws and Ordinances

    The National Committee on Uniform Traffic Laws and Ordinances is a private, non-profit membership organization dedicated to providing uniformity of traffic laws and regulations through the timely dissemination of information and model legislation on traffic safety issues.

  • School Bus and Transit Workers United

    Around the country, school bus workers are joining together and working to make real improvements in our jobs and our lives. We are standing up for good jobs and safe, reliable school bus services in our communities. We are making sure we have a voice at work, we are bargaining as equals with our employers, and we are working to ensure that we are all treated fairly and with respect. School Bus Workers United & Drive Up Standards is being conducted by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Publications Related to Bus Accidents

  • Future Truck and Bus Safety Research Opportunities

    The TRB Publications Index contains over 41,000 papers, articles, and reports published by the Transportation Research Board, Highway Research Board, Strategic Highway Research Program, or the Marine Board from 1923 to date.

  • Transit Bus Safety Resource Guide

    The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), in collaboration with members from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ (AASHTO) Multi-State Technical Assistance Program (MTAP), is working with the Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR) to promote a bus transit safety management practices guide and model program to aid states and transit systems in the development of a system safety program and related implementing procedures.




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