What To Do After A Bus Accident In Pennsylvania


In Pennsylvania, many people ride buses for transportation. Bus accidents are much more common than people might think. In 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics reports that there were 73,930 bus accidents in the U.S. All types of buses can be involved in collisions and cause injuries and fatalities to people both on and off the bus. School buses, church buses, public transit buses, charter buses, and private buses. When you get on a bus as a passenger, you might not think that you could possibly be involved in an accident. However, bus accidents can happen, making it important for you to know what to do in the event one occurs. Here is some information from the bus accident lawyers at Raynes & Lawn about what you should do if you are injured in a bus accident in Pennsylvania.

1. Call for help.

The first thing you should do after a bus crash is to call 911 for help. It is critical for you to report the accident so that people who have been injured can receive medical care. You should still call to report the accident even if you do not initially see anyone who appears to be injured. Someone might have suffered injuries that are not immediately obvious. Calling 911 will also allow the police to respond to determine what caused the accident. There could also be people outside of the bus who need help, including bicyclists, pedestrians, or motorists.

2. Check yourself and others for injuries.

Right after you call 911, you should check yourself and others for injuries. If you find someone who has been injured, provide first aid until help arrives. Do not move someone who appears injured unless doing so is necessary for safety reasons. Moving a person who might have suffered a spinal cord injury could exacerbate their injuries and result in paralysis. However, if there is an emergency such as leaking fuel or a fire, you might have no choice but to move an injured victim to get him or her to safety.

3. Seek medical attention.

Anytime you are involved in an accident, you should seek medical attention to get a medical evaluation. You might have suffered injuries in a bus accident that might not show symptoms for hours or even days afterward. Some people suffer severe injuries in bus accidents when the buses roll or tip over or are struck by trains. Even if the bus accident in which you were involved was relatively minor, you can be injured from being thrown inside of the bus because of the force of the collision. Getting medical care immediately after your bus accident might help you to obtain an accurate diagnosis and begin your recovery. If you wait to see a doctor, any injuries you might have might worsen, and it will also be more difficult to prove the accident caused your injuries instead of an intervening event.

4. Take photos of the accident scene.

Right after your accident, try to take as many pictures as possible. You should photograph any damage to the interior of the bus as well as its exterior. Take pictures of the damage to other vehicles that were involved as well as your injuries. You should also photograph other important details, including the weather, road conditions, nearby traffic lights, and other things that might have contributed to what happened.

5. Get the names and contact information of witnesses,

If you are able, ask for people who witnessed the bus accident for their names and contact details. You should also ask other passengers on the bus for their names and contact details. This can help your attorney find and interview witnesses if you choose to file a bus accident claim.

6. Document everything you recall.

As soon as you are able, write down everything you remember from the accident. Write as many details as possible about what happened in the moments leading up to the crash, including whether the bus was speeding, if the bus driver seemed distracted or drowsy, and other similar types of information. Writing down the details of what happened can help you recall information that you might later forget.

7. Do not give a recorded statement to the bus company or insurance company.

If you sustained injuries in a bus accident, the insurance company will likely contact you and ask you to give a recorded statement. You are not obligated to talk to the bus company’s insurance company about what happened. Instead, you should politely decline and tell the insurance representative that you want to talk to an attorney before you will give any statements. Insurance company representatives might try to trick you into saying something that could potentially harm your claim.

8. Do not sign an early settlement offer or a medical release.

In some cases, insurance companies will send early settlement offers to bus crash victims. If you accept an early settlement offer, you will not be able to ask for more money later to cover your losses. Before you accept an offer, you should meet with an experienced attorney at Raynes & Lawn to receive an estimated value of your claim. Many early settlement offers are unreasonably low and insufficient to cover all of the losses of bus accident victims.

You should also avoid signing a medical release for the bus company or its insurance company. You might be told that they need you to sign the release so they can verify your injuries. Insurance companies use signed medical releases to access the victims’ medical histories and attempt to blame the victims’ injuries on earlier events.

9. Talk to an experienced bus accident attorney.

If you have suffered injuries in a bus collision, you might be wondering how to find bus accident lawyers near me. The attorneys at Raynes & Lawn are experienced with handling bus collision claims and can help you to understand the merits of your case. Call us today to schedule a free consultation at (800) 535-1797.

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