The South Los Angeles area bus driver suffered minor injuries, with no kids being injured.
School buses in California are not quiet, diesel-powered, often with overcrowded seats, and rarely equipped with seatbelts. They are designed to drive kids around at a snail’s pace and are not especially maneuverable in residential areas. Anytime there is a crash, parents are rightly concerned when their teenager and other children are aboard.
School bus crashes, along with train crashes, seem to be happening more and more every time I turn on the television. I was watching cable TV news and saw Conan Nolan’s report for NBC4 News. Nolan published that on March 17, 2023, a school bus reportedly landed in a residential home’s driveway Friday morning after colliding with several parked cars in a residential block of South Los Angeles, CA.
I am Los Angeles school bus accident attorney Michael Ehline. I specialize in transportation and common carrier accidents. I am here to discuss who will likely be legally responsible for paying for property damages and injuries caused by the school bus here. The available facts show at least two parked vehicles got smashed in at about 7:30 a.m. in the 1700 block of West 54th Street.
The yellow school bus apparently crashed through a residential fence or block wall near the adjoining home. The school bus driver was also injured and taken away in an ambulance to the hospital, in guarded condition, with seemingly minor injuries. Of the seven student passengers aboard the bus, the LAFD reported, all had been taken to school on another bus. So the good news is no students report they were hurt! According to law enforcement, the bus driver was apparently taking evasive action to avoid another car moments before losing control and crashing.
Almost Always Causes Damages and Other Injuries?
Normally, when there are damages to property and personal injuries, the victims will begin to argue about who is at fault to pay. Here, the bus driver likely has no-fault workers’ compensation claims and an insurance claim against the other driver, assuming it was not a hit-and-run and the facts are correct.
If you have some time, share what you have learned here with your friends about this crash, as talking helps teenagers and parents know how to create a game plan in case of a bus crash to ensure everybody is safe. Don’t rely on the government or authorities alone, as someone could be killed without knowing how to deal with a common school bus collision.
For example, departing the bus into traffic can result in a sibling, brother, sister, or best friend getting run over in head-on traffic. There can be other injuries suffered in school bus crashes, and if there is no first responder, like the police, your teenagers must know basic first aid and CPR too. Let’s look at this crash scene under the microscope of legal liability with a top Los Angeles bus accident attorney.
Let’s Take a Look at Who Could Potentially Be Liable to Cover Any Damages or Injuries
In California, the question of who will be found legally liable for a school bus accident depends on the specific circumstances of the accident. It boils down to whether a particular foreseeable act would likely cause an injury to another person. If the damages are foreseeable, certain, and unavoidable, the victims have the right to be fully compensated monetarily.
In the case at the bar, the facts show the bus driver was forced to take evasive action to avoid a crash with another vehicle. Assuming his actions were objectively reasonable, another driver is likely responsible for causing the collision, careening the bus into two other cars, and landing in the front yard of a house.
However, if the bus driver were out of line, the LAUSD would face liability here. Generally, school districts in California have a legal duty to ensure their students’ safety, including providing safe transportation back and forth from school. Suppose a school bus accident occurs due to the negligence or misconduct of the school district (LAUSD), such as inadequate maintenance or improper training of the bus driver. The district may be liable for any resulting injuries or damages in that case. A school bus driver will typically have better training, as they act as a commercially licensed common carrier.
Likewise, suppose the bus driver was at fault for the accident, such as driving while distracted or under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In that case, the driver may be held liable for any resulting injuries or damages, seemingly his injuries and significant property damage. In some cases, other drivers involved in the accident may be liable if they were driving recklessly or negligently. Additionally, the manufacturer may be held responsible if a defect caused the accident in the bus or its parts. The other driver may be guilty of a criminal hit and run. But we don’t have the facts to show they fled. We have evidence that the bus driver reacted to something the passenger vehicle driver had done.
It’s important to note that determining liability in a school bus accident can be complex for passengers on board and other people involved, like a mother, father, sister, or brother seeking justice. Winning a school bus accident case often requires the expertise of legal professionals who possess this information due to years of practice with this kind f case. Suppose you or a loved one has been involved in a school bus accident in California. In that case, it’s recommended that you seek the advice of an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you navigate the legal process and ensure your rights are protected.
The impact of failing to know your parental and bystander rights in a school bus crash can leave you holding the bag, with thousands in out-of-pocket losses. Contact the Los Angeles school bus crash lawyers at Ehline Law Firm to learn more about making a government claim and the shortened statute of limitations if you were involved in a bus crash.