Getting the Compensation You Deserve After an Indiana Bus Accident

Bus accident scene in IndianaBus accidents claim the lives of about a dozen school children every year in America, and thousands of other school-age children get hurt in bus accidents annually; for a total of more than 5.76 billion miles per year, this safety record may seem relatively good – particularly when compared with motorcycle and bicycle accident rates, which are much higher per mile traveled.

Considering the American School Bus Council's estimate that about 480,000 buses in the U.S. are used to transport 25 million children each day. Nevertheless, school bus accidents tend to be particularly volatile and catastrophic due to two factors:

  • School buses generally do not have seatbelts to keep students safely secured in place.
  • School and other passenger buses (particularly those designed to carry 15 or more passengers) have higher centers of gravity. This makes these vehicles more susceptible to rolling over in an accident.

Public transit buses, shuttles, private motor coaches, airport passenger vans and commercial buses transport passengers over nearly 1 billion miles of road each year in the United States. Although National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) statistics suggest that riding a commercial bus may be safer than riding a motorcycle (or even driving in certain cars and trucks), when bus accidents do occur the number of victims, as well as the extent and severity of injuries, tend to be devastating.

Nationwide and Indiana Bus Accident Statistics

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) national statistics, 280 buses were involved in fatal accidents in one recent year. School buses accounted for 41 percent of these accidents, followed by transit buses, which accounted for 33 percent, and intercity buses, which accounted for 13 percent.

Additional reports show that 12 percent of bus drivers involved in fatal collisions were 66 years of age or older, and 3 percent were under the age of 26. Females accounted for 32 percent of bus drivers involved in fatal collisions.

In Indiana, the state’s most recent crash report reveals that of the 331,693 total vehicle-related collisions in the state, buses of varying types were involved in:

  • 1,628 total collisions
  • 3 fatal collisions
  • 26 incapacitating collisions
  • 193 non-incapacitating collisions

Indiana school buses were involved in:

  • 761 total collisions
  • 1 fatal collision
  • 10 incapacitating collisions
  • 71 non-incapacitating collisions

Other buses were involved in:

  • 203 total collisions
  • 0 fatal collisions
  • 5 incapacitating collisions
  • 24 non-incapacitating collisions

Learn more about Common Causes and Bus Accidents Injuries +

School Transportation-Related Accidents

Accidents involving school transportation vehicles tend to be among the most devastating, as these often involve innocent children under the age of 19, who are either on their way to or from school.

According to NHTSA, 1,214 school transportation-related accidents took place in the U.S. between 2004 and 2013. In these accidents:

  • 1,344 people, or an average of 134 per year, lost their lives.
  • 8 percent of the fatalities involved children and other occupants of school transportation vehicles, while 21 percent of the fatalities involved non-occupants, such as pedestrians and bicyclists.
  • In 71 percent of school transportation-related accidents, occupants of other vehicles were the ones who suffered fatal injuries.
  • Of the 106 school transportation occupants killed in vehicle-related collisions between 2004 and 2013, drivers accounted for 45 of them and passengers accounted for the remaining 61.
  • 116 school-age children were killed while pedestrians in collisions involving school transportation vehicles.

Learn more about School Bus Accidents +

Common Carriers

Operators of public buses owe a higher standard of care to passengers and pedestrians.

What does this mean? It means that, when bus drivers violate the law, they are even more accountable for damage to life or limb than a private citizen driving a car or truck might be.

Responding Effectively to Bus Accidents in Indiana

If you or your child has been injured in a bus accident in Indiana, you may need to take immediate steps to claim compensation from liable parties, such as a negligent bus driver or a municipality.

Bus accident cases can be legally complicated, as they may involve both private and public defendants.

Attorney Randall Sevenish has been practicing injury law in Indiana for more than 30 years, and you can speak with him today about your Indiana bus accident case in a free consultation. Call now or fill out our online contact form.

Bus accident attorneys at Sevenish Law Firm