A second tour bus has crashed in San Francisco in less than two months. The accident happened around 6 p.m. on December 26. The bus was a double-decker tour bus, and the accident happened near the intersection of Broadway and Embarcadero. Eight people were transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Two of them were children. One other person refused treatment at the scene. Everyone involved in the accident is expected to recover.
The operator of the bus was Big Bus Tours of San Francisco. The crash occurred when a car cut off the tour bus as it traveled on Embarcadero, which caused the tour bus driver to slam on the brakes. Another car then hit the bus from behind.
After the accident, several emergency vehicles responded to the scene, which closed down the very busy street. Injured passengers were then loaded into ambulances. The driver of the bus has worked for the company for about two years. Police have said the SUV’s driver will be cited for making an improper lane change.
The last tour bus accident in San Francisco occurred on November 14 when a City Sightseeing double-decker bus lost control in Union Square. Twenty people were hurt, six of them critically. Several of the accident victims suffered facial and head injuries, in addition to arm, leg, and rib fractures. In that accident, the bus had not been inspected by the California Highway Patrol, in spite of a rule that tour operators must notify the state within 10 days of adding a vehicle to a fleet. After that accident, the California Highway Patrol conducted a surprise post-accident inspection of City Sightseeing, and found 61 violations, 29 of which were related to problems with the equipment, including faulty brake lights, emergency exits that were inoperable, and a fuel leak.
Although this second tour bus accident does not appear to be the fault of the tour bus operator, it does illustrate how dangerous taking public transportation can be. Millions of people in the U.S. take public transportation on a daily basis, including buses, trains, subways, airplanes, taxis, and ferries. By law, common carriers (those who operate public transportation) are required to use the highest degree of care when transporting the public.
When an accident involving public transportation does occur, the accident may involve just a single passenger, or hundreds of passengers. In many cases, the companies involved are huge corporate or governmental entities that have large amounts of insurance. There may be specific laws that are applicable to the particular accident. It’s critical that a person injured in an accident involving a common carrier be represented by an attorney who can stand up for their rights to compensation, and who can help them understand the applicable laws.
According to the National Traffic Safety Board, the most common causes of accidents involving public transportation are operator fatigue and errors, a failure to follow proper procedures, and equipment failure. In any of these types of accidents, the injured accident victim has the right to seek compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, medical expenses, and other out-of-pocket expenses. The family of the accident victim may be able to seek compensation as well.
At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty and Seth I. Rosenberg believe that injured accident victims should seek the full compensation to which they are entitled under the law. Call the San Francisco personal injury attorneys at Liberty Law at 415-896-1000 or 510-645-1000. We will provide you with a free consultation on your case, and you pay us nothing in fees unless we obtain compensation for you. Call us today to learn more or to schedule a free consultation.