Slip and Fall Liability on a Bus in California
Compensation for Slip and Fall on a Bus
Drivers must follow a set of safety rules to prevent accidents from happening. This includes the following.
- Do not stay in the bus’s blind spot. School buses typically have blind spots that could be in its front, back, or sides. If you do not have a clear view of the bus driver when looking at the side mirror, then make the assumption that they are not able to see you either. An individual caught in this type of circumstance should either slow down or move ahead to remain visible to the bus driver. If you are moving ahead, use caution when doing so.
- Pass safely. Make sure you have a good visual of the bus driver through their side mirror prior to passing them. You should signal when you are moving and accelerate to pass by the bus in a safe manner. Do not stay behind in the blind spot. You need to be visible to the bus driver before you try to pull in front, but make sure you have extra space before doing so.If you notice a bus driver trying to merge into your lane, give them extra space to go in front of you. Speeding up to pass them is dangerous. Not only are you putting yourself at risk of an accident, but you are risking the bus driver and passengers’ lives, as well.
- Do not cut too close to the bus. Do not make a fast lane change. The likelihood of a collision between you and the bus driver will increase. You need to give bus drivers enough time to react when you are making an attempt at cutting in front of them.
- Distance yourself from the bus. Avoid tailgating a school bus, especially since it puts you in a blind spot. Failing to stop in time will cause your vehicle to get into an accident with the bus.
- Remain patient. Even though buses do not drive as fast as other vehicles, you should not use that as an excuse to honk or get frustrated. You need to put your focus on following the rules of the road. Stay patient and drive safely to avoid any mishaps from occurring.
- Wear your seat belt. You should wear your seat belt at all times. This will lower your chances of suffering from a serious injury.
- Stay focused on the road. Avoid getting distracted by a text or call. A distracted driver is the equivalent to an impaired driver. Your phone is not as important as your life. Put your full attention on the road.
- Do not drive while fatigued. Lack of sleep can greatly affect your driving skills. Drivers who are fatigued will have a difficult time putting their focus on the road when their eyes are constantly shutting from being restless. Try to take regular breaks if you are driving while fatigued. You could also have another individual drive you to your destination.
- Do not drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Being intoxicated or on drugs while operating a vehicle will get you into serious consequences. You are creating a dangerous environment for you and others nearby.
If you are taking prescribed drugs, make sure to speak to your doctor about the effects it could have on you when you are driving your car.
Fines and Penalties for Road Rule Violations
Under California Vehicle Code 42001, consequences for driving infractions are:
- First offense. You will get a fine of up to $100.
- Second offense. You will receive a fine of up to $200.
- Third offense. You will have your license suspended for 1 year and a fine of up to $250.
Additional fines and penalties a driver could face when violating the rules of the road include:
California Vehicle Code 22348. Any driver who is on the road at a speed greater than 100 miles per hour will be charged with a fine of up to $500 and a 30-day license suspension. If the second offense occurs within three years of the prior offense, the driver will face a fine of up to $750 and a 6-month license suspension. If a driver commits a third offense within five years of two or more prior offenses, then they will be given a fine of up to $1,000 and a one-year license suspension.
California Vehicle Code 23123.5. Those who are holding or using an electronic device while operating a vehicle will face charges for violating the rules of the road. A first offense is a $20 fine and every other offense following after will be a $50 fine.
California Vehicle Code 27315. No individual is allowed to operate a vehicle until they have their seat belts on. First offenders who violate this law will receive a fine of $20. Second and subsequent offenses will be given a $50 fine.
Accidents happen. If you were injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Below is a brief explanation of damages. Damages are a type of monetary award that is determined by a court of law to help compensate an aggrieved individual for any losses or injuries sustained as a result of someone’s negligence.
Economic damages are intended to compensate a plaintiff for losses that a dollar amount can readily be attached to. Economic damages are calculated by determining the amount of out-of-pocket losses an aggrieved individual has or will expect to incur as a result of their injuries.
A few examples of economic losses include:
- Loss of Earning Capacity
- Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
Non-economic damages are essentially intended to cover losses that are thought of as subjective and will not necessarily cover out-of-pocket losses. Non-economic damages may include compensation for:
- Emotional Distress
- Pain and Suffering
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life
The third type of damages a California court may award are known as punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended as punishment and are only awarded when a defendant’s behavior is especially harmful. Punitive damages are relatively rare and in fact were only incorporated in 5 percent of all verdicts.
Furthermore, there is no real set standard for calculating and awarding punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded at the court’s discretion and will vary depending on the specific circumstances of a case.
Limitations for Damages in California
For the most part, there is no real cap on compensatory damages following a personal injury claim. This means that courts are able to award any amount they feel is appropriate and reasonable.
However, the only exception is regarding medical malpractice cases. In these cases, the limit for pain and suffering and other non-economic losses is $250,000.
Victims of bus accidents are subject to costly repairs, bodily damage, and mental anguish. We at West Coast Trial Lawyers understand how stressful these situations can be and we handle each case with the individual attention and compassion you deserve. Our bus accident lawyers will help you recover financial and emotional damages that you have suffered because of the accident. This includes medical expenses, lost wages, emotional distress, property damage, and pain and suffering.
We offer a free, no-obligation consultation with the attorneys at our firm. Reach out to our knowledgeable, caring, and compassionate personal injury lawyers 24/7 by calling (213) 927-3700 or emailing [email protected]