In Southern California, many people use public transportation. You may ride the bus frequently; in fact, it may be the way you usually get to your job, to shop, to visit relatives, etc.
Public transportation is safe, but accidents sometimes happen. Do you know what to do if you are a passenger in a bus accident?
Because buses do not usually have seat belts, a collision may toss passengers around. Check yourself for injuries, then check those around you. Passengers in need of medical assistance should be top priority after a crash. You may feel shaken but think you are otherwise all right. Remember that you may have injuries that do not show up right away. Make sure you go for a medical examination as soon as possible.
Take down as much information about the accident as possible. Jot down the license number of the bus, the name of the driver and the company that owns the bus. Exchange contact information with the passengers around you. If you have a smartphone, you can use the camera to take pictures of the crash scene, and especially of the area of the bus in which you were sitting or standing.
Several parties could be liable in a lawsuit filed following a bus crash. These may include the bus driver, the transit company and perhaps a company you might not think of, such as a manufacturer if it is determined that equipment failure had a role in the crash.
You will likely be eligible to file a claim for compensation if you sustained any kind of injury in the bus crash. You should not delay, first, in seeking a medical evaluation and report, and second, in seeking legal counsel. Passengers may file separate lawsuits, but class action lawsuits on behalf of passengers are also common in mass transit accidents, and you would be among those represented.