High School Bus Accident Rate Puts New Jersey Children at Risk
When New Jersey parents send their kids off to school in the morning, they expect that their children will be kept out of harm’s way. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. A recent rash of school bus accidents has left many parents with serious concerns over how well their children’s safety is being protected.
In February, one child was killed and three others were critically injured in a crash between an elementary school bus and a dump truck in Chesterfield. In mid-March, 11 children in Gloucester County suffered personal injuries in a traffic accident involving a school bus. Just a few days later, 21 students in Galloway Township were sent to the hospital with injuries from a crash between their school bus and an SUV.
These are just a few of the many bus accidents that have injured New Jersey schoolchildren since the start of the year. In fact, between January and March 2012, there were eight injury-causing school bus accidents in South Jersey alone.
What to Do After a New Jersey School Bus Accident
School bus accidents happen for many of the same reasons that other motor vehicle accidents do. In some cases, the accident can be attributed to the negligence of another driver who collides with the bus. In other instances, the bus driver may be overtired, distracted or driving in a way that isn’t safe for road conditions. Sometimes, school districts ask drivers to take routes that are made dangerous by heavy traffic or poor visibility.
Children who are injured in New Jersey school bus accidents have a right to seek damages. Usually, a parent will file a lawsuit on their child’s behalf. Depending on who was at fault, the lawsuit might be brought against the school bus driver, bus company, school district or a third-party driver.
If your child is injured in a school bus accident, make sure to visit a doctor right away. Children aren’t always great at expressing their symptoms and many dangerous injuries – like head injuries, spinal cord trauma or organ damage – aren’t always obvious to untrained eyes. Make sure your child participates in all recommended follow-up care.
The next step is to file a claim with the appropriate insurance companies. Since so many parties are involved in a school bus accident claim, it is advisable to seek the assistance of a New Jersey personal injury attorney at this point in the process. The attorney can advise you of your rights and help your child get the compensation he or she deserves.