Few things rival the fear parents feel when they hear their child was involved in an accident. News of school bus accidents is no less scary and can involve many students. Since 2013 began, there have been numerous school bus accidents reported with a variety of causes and responsible parties.
On January 7, a school bus in Harrisonville, Missouri carrying 19 children was rear-ended at about 8:40 a.m. on the way to school. Another school bus transported the kids to school but paramedics were not called to the scene. According to the local police, no ambulance was ordered because dispatch had been informed that there were no injuries. However, some parents feel EMTs should have been called as a precaution, given that the accident involved numerous children. A seven-year-old girl involved in the accident complained that her head was hurting in class and the little girl’s brother complained his ribs hurt. Their mother decided to pick them up and take them to the hospital and expressed concerns that their injuries would have gone untreated for eight hours if her daughter hadn’t complained.
In another school bus incident, eight high school students, a bus monitor, and the bus driver were injured when the bus was struck by a car at around 3:00 p.m. The cause of this St. Louis accident is currently under investigation.
A Jonesboro Public Schools’ bus driver has been put on indefinite leave pending the results of a drug test after an accident in early January. The accident report stated that the Arkansas bus driver was traveling west when he rear-ended a Chevrolet pickup and a GMC Sierra pickup that were stopped at a traffic light. The two trucks were knocked into the intersection and the school bus continued, traveled through the intersection, and hit the front of another vehicle. The third vehicle was knocked “completely around,” and the bus drove off the road and came to a rest after striking a fence. So far, careless driving has been listed by police as a contributing factor.
There are a number of parties that could be at fault in bus accidents. In the event that negligence can be established for some party in causing the accident or a party was negligent in ensuring students had proper medical care, those parties may be found liable. Depending on the severity of the accident, injured parties could receive compensation or damages for brain injuries, such as concussions, burn injuries, other personal injuries, or even wrongful death.