An Ohio child was killed and more than 20 others injured in an August school bus crash that garnered national attention. The collision took place on State Route 41 in German Township, Clark County. According to the State Highway Patrol, the bus was traveling westbound on State Route around 8:15 am. It was struck by a 2010 Honda Odyssey minivan traveling eastbound, went off the right side of the road and overturned. The driver of the minivan was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide.
This accident is just one example of school bus collision liability. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, several other parties could be held liable.
Potentially liable parties
When a school bus is involved in a crash, determining liability can be complicated, since multiple parties may be involved. It’s crucial that parents of injured parties seek legal advice as soon as possible, since cases involving government entities often have a shorter time to file.
Potentially liable parties may include:
- The bus driver: School bus drivers are responsible for ensuring the safety of their passengers and other road users. Drivers may be liable if they were negligent or violated traffic laws, such as speeding, running red lights or driving recklessly. Distracted driving, impaired driving and fatigue can also contribute to accidents. Sometimes, school bus accidents occur due to adverse weather conditions, road defects or similar external factors. While the driver is responsible for spotting and avoiding hazards, these factors may limit their liability.
- The school district: The school district that operates the bus service has a duty to ensure that their buses are properly maintained and safe for use. If a crash occurs due to inadequate maintenance, school district may be held liable for negligence. The district may also be held responsible for driver negligence under a theory of vicarious liability.
- Other motorists: Liability may fall on other motorists involved, such as the accident above. If another driver’s negligence leads to a collision with a school bus, they may be held responsible.
- Manufacturers and maintenance providers: In some cases, defects in the school bus itself, such as faulty brakes, defective tires or other manufacturing issues, contribute to an accident. Alternatively, negligent third-party maintenance providers could bear fault.
If your child has been injured in a school bus crash, call the Law Offices of Tim Misny right away. We’ll review your claim, guide you through the legal process and help you recover compensation.
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The Law Offices of Tim Misny can help you with your accident claim. When your child is the victim of negligence or recklessness, I’ll Make Them Pay!® Call my office at (877) 614-9524 so that I can evaluate your case right away.