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Bus accidents are very common. Each year, nearly 63,000 accidents involving buses occur in the United States. Over 14,000 people are injured by these accidents. These unfortunate statistics have become noticeably high in more densely populated cities, such as Pasadena. 

Pasadena Transit has about 9 routes that operate within the city. Each of these routes is connected with the Metro Gold Line. With so many buses running their services every day of the week, the chances of a bus accident are high. The likelihood of a bus accident greatly depends on the bus driver and the road they are driving on. In many circumstances, a bus driver may cause a collision by simply failing to pay attention to the road. Not only will they harm the passengers on the bus, but they may also affect pedestrians on the street. 

Another scenario that could cause a bus accident is faulty roads that were not constructed or properly maintained. If a bus driver is attempting to navigate through a defective road, they do so at a heightened risk of harming their passengers. No matter how many precautions a bus driver may take, they may still not be entirely capable of avoiding a collision. With all the routes, cars, and pedestrians in the Pasadena area, the likelihood of a bus accident is high.

West Coast Trial Lawyer has skilled Pasadena bus accident attorneys that have over 60 years of collective legal experience. We are ranked as one of the top personal injury law firms in Pasadena. With over $1 billion in settlements recovered for our clients, we are confident that you will have a satisfactory end-result to your case. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our Pasadena bus accident attorneys, reach out to our legal team 24/7 by calling (626) 412-8157 or emailing [email protected]

Common Causes Of Bus Accidents In Pasadena

There are several factors that may trigger a bus accident. These include:

  • Speeding. Bus drivers may feel obligated to speed in order to keep up with their schedules and reach their destinations on time. This may unfortunately increase the chances of a bus accident occurring. 
  • Road hazards. Some roads do not accommodate buses. This makes it difficult for the bus driver to safely navigate their way through them. Poor weather conditions may also contribute to potential bus accidents. 
  • Defects. A bus abruptly breaking down in the middle of the street can easily result in a bus accident. This depends on the level of traffic. If there is dense traffic, chances are the bus will get into a collision with another vehicle. To avoid this from happening, it is important for bus operators to always conduct routine maintenance to make sure buses are in good condition. However, not all bus operators comply with regular maintenance requirements, which can subject them to liability. 
  • Overcrowded buses. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has specific weight restrictions to prevent overcrowding to occur on a bus. Bus drivers who operate a bus with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rate (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more must acquire a CDL. Additionally, passenger endorsements are needed if the bus is carrying 16 or more passengers, including the bus driver. If a weight restriction is exceeded, the bus driver will not be able to safely operate the bus, which can lead to a bus accident. 
  • Distraction. There are various factors that could cause a bus driver to become distracted. With school buses, the bus driver could become agitated by children misbehaving or making loud noises. The driver may then feel obligated to tell the children to relax and behave, thus distracting him or her. Another common hazard could be cell phone usage. If the bus driver is texting and driving, it will increase the chances of a collision with a vehicle nearby. 
  • Intoxication. Bus drivers who consume drugs or alcohol before or during their shift are displaying negligent and careless behavior. Their reckless decisions will make it difficult for them to fully pay attention to the road since they may be impaired. To prevent this from happening, the FMCSA has a strict requirement for bus drivers to take drug and alcohol tests. If the bus driver refuses to test or is found with either substance in their system, they will face harsh consequences for violating these safety requirements. 
Who Is Liable In A Bus Accident?

It is difficult to determine who was at-fault for causing a bus accident. There are several factors to consider. The negligent driver may have been speeding, under the influence of drugs or alcohol, fatigued, or distracted. Sometimes a negligent bus driver had nothing to do with causing an accident. We will also discuss those scenarios below. 

To gather convincing evidence, a plaintiff’s bus accident attorney must conduct a thorough investigation. This will help determine what caused the accident and whether or not it was preventable. Potential candidates that could be at-fault for a bus accident include:

  • Bus driver. According to California Common Law, bus drivers are required to give the “utmost care and diligence for their safe carriage, must provide everything necessary for that purpose, and must exercise to that end a reasonable degree of skill.” Their primary goal should be to provide a safe environment for passengers on the bus and drivers surrounding them. Therefore, bus drivers are expected to:
  • Give a reasonable amount of respect and attention to passengers.
  • Give appropriate accommodation for disabled and elderly passengers.
  • Notify passengers about potential dangers that might happen when using the bus services. 
  • Protect passengers from experiencing injuries. 
  • Not exceed the posted speed limit.
  • Follow the rules of the road. 
  • Bus manufacturer. They will be held liable for:
  • Design defects found in the bus. 
  • Knowledge of defects made during the manufacturing process, but failing to mention anything about them. 
  • Not including a warning label for individuals to be aware of the potential risks that may come about when utilizing the bus. 
  • City, Council, and State Agencies for constructing defective roads. They will be responsible for injuries if they:
  • Constructed faulty roads.
  • Left debris on the roads or highways. 
  • Failed to provide warning signs for curves or other hazards.
  • Created the wrong signage for zones that were made to be used for construction. 
Contact Us

If you were a victim of a bus accident, West Coast Trial Lawyers has skilled Pasadena bus accident attorneys that are readily available to assist you with your case. There are no financial risks involved when using our services. No fees will be charged until your case has been won or settled. Reach out to our legal team 24/7 by calling (626) 412-8157 or emailing [email protected]

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If you have been injured in an accident, you can count on the legal team at West Coast Trial Lawyers to fight for your rights every step of the way. Contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation with a personal injury attorney.
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