WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE IN A BUS ACCIDENT
As with every accident, there are a few steps you should take in the immediate aftermath to ensure your short-term and long-term health, safety, and well-being.
Many of these steps are like those that should be taken in any moving vehicle accident:
· The first thing you should do in a bus accident, as in any accident, is to make sure you and those around you are safe. If anyone is injured, even slightly, call 911 - typically the bus driver will call 911, but if they can’t or don’t, you have every right to call, even if the injury seems minor
· If you were a bus passenger, follow the bus driver’s directions, if you were a third party who was hit by a bus, move out of the road
· Once you have made sure you are safe and the police are on their way, you should request the names and contact information of everyone at the accident scene, including drivers of vehicles, bus passengers, and any other witnesses present - if you were a driver, sharing your contact and insurance information with the other driver is a legal requirement to avoid hit-and-run charges
· If you have a cell phone or camera on hand, take photographs of the accident scene from as many angles as possible
· When the police respond, take down the officer’s name, badge number, and business card, and make sure that they record your version of events into the police report - officers will compile their accident notes into a final report later - this accident report is an important piece of evidence
· If you aren’t taken to a hospital after the accident, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible, preferably the same day - you should always do this after an accident: First, some injuries with delayed symptoms take time to manifest, and you might feel fine immediately after accident, only to be diagnosed with an injury later - second, the medical records taken immediately after an accident are the primary form of proof that you were injured - if you have a gap in treatment, your case will suffer as a result
· The most crucial step you should take at this stage is to never talk to the other side’s insurance adjusters, or their lawyers, without your own lawyer present, these people don’t represent you and don’t have your best interests at heart - they are experts at tricking people to say things that will damn their case - they may give you a “lowball offer” that at first, may seem generous, but may not even begin to cover your injury expenses
A Kim & Associates Attorney will represent you in all your dealings with insurance adjusters. Our attorneys have extensive experience dealing with bus accidents and will ensure you are compensated to the full extent possible. We have a proven track record of winning accident cases against heavy odds, and we are passionate about leveling the playing field so accident victims receive the justice that they deserve.