Articles Posted in Bus Accidents

Published on:

Earlier last month, an appellate court issued a written opinion discussing whether a casino has a duty to protect passengers as they board a free shuttle operated by the casino. In the case, Huang v. The Bicycle Casino, the appellate court determined that the lower court erred when it held, as a matter of law, that the defendant did not owe the plaintiff a duty of care to prevent other passengers from trampling her as she was boarding the bus. Although the court did not reach a final decision on whether the casino was acting as a common carrier, the language used by the court indicated its willingness to consider the issue in future cases presenting similar facts.

Crowded BusThe Facts of the Case:  A Woman Is Trampled as She Boards a Casino Shuttle

Huang was planning on visiting the defendant casino. To get there, she planned to take a free shuttle offered by the casino. However, she was not alone in her desire to use the free shuttle. In fact, there were between 40 and 70 other people waiting for the same shuttle, which only had 40 seats.

The casino did not do anything to ensure the orderly boarding of the shuttle, and the shuttle stop was described as chaotic by those present. As the shuttle approached, the crowd ran toward it with many people trying to board at the same time. As Huang approached the shuttle doors, the crowd surged and caused her to slip. As a result of her fall, she sustained a serious injury. She subsequently filed a personal injury lawsuit against the casino.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Earlier this month, an appellate court in Delaware issued an interesting opinion broadly interpreting the “personal injury protection” coverage of a school bus to cover a girl who was injured while boarding the school bus. In the case, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. v. Buckley, the court determined that even though the school bus was not involved in any physical collision, the fact that the driver instructed the young girl to board the bus immediately before she was hit by another car implicated the bus’ personal injury protection policy.

School BusesThe Facts of the Case

Buckley was a young student who was waiting for the bus to take her to school. When the bus arrived, the driver opened its doors and instructed Buckley to enter the school bus. However, as the young girl began to enter the bus, she was struck by another vehicle. She suffered serious injuries as a result, and her family filed a lawsuit against the school bus driver. The insurance company that insured the bus defended the lawsuit, claiming that there was no “accident” involving the bus, so the insurance policy was not triggered.

It is uncontested that the insurance policy was only triggered if there was an “accident” involving the bus. Thus, the court had to decide whether the facts as they were presented constituted an “accident” under the insurance policy.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Earlier this month, an accident occurred near S.R. 20, Cumming Highway, and Hightower Road. According to local Georgia news reports, the accident involved a truck and a school bus that was transporting students of the Cherokee School District. Apparently, the driver of the truck ran through a stop sign and proceeded to enter an intersection on S.R. 369. The school bus was traveling west on S.R. 20 when it hit the left side of the truck that ran through the light.

bus-604402-mThe truck driver received a citation because he did not stop at the stop sign or yield at the intersection. Fortunately, there was only one student on the bus at the time, and he suffered only minor injuries. However, the bus driver suffered some injuries to his hand and was treated at a local hospital. The highway was blocked for some time and did not reopen until about 9:40 a.m. that morning.

Who is Liable in a Trucking Accident?

Accidents always have a risk of causing serious harm and risk to individuals. However, when trucks are involved, those risks are exponentially increased. In the case of trucking accidents, many people choose to file suits against the truck driver if he or she was acting negligently in the operation of his or her vehicle. Although the most common defendant in these cases is the truck driver, it is important to note that many times the trucking company can be held liable as well.

Continue reading →

Published on:

Evidentiary issues are some of the most important issues that courts of appeal determine. By determining what kinds of evidence are admissible at trial, courts can greatly influence what types of cases are permitted to move forward and can also affect the likelihood that a case will end up garnering a favorable settlement or jury verdict. bus-on-the-run-1170123-mIn a recent court of appeals opinion, a court of appeals held that time-lapsed video is admissible under the same legal theory that permits still photographs.

In the case, Smith v. Geico Casualty Company, Smith was injured in a bus accident. At trial, Smith sought damages in excess of $250,000. However, Geico was allowed to introduce time-lapsed footage of the bus during the accident. The video seems to show that the accident was not as severe as Smith alleged, putting doubt into the minds of the jury that Smith’s claim was worth as much as he asserted. In the end, Smith was only awarded $20,000 for past medical expenses by the jury. Smith appealed.

Smith’s Appeal

On appeal, Smith argued that it was an error for the court to allow the time-lapsed video evidence, because it created a misleading picture of how the accident occurred. Smith explained that the video only showed four to five frames per second. An average video has approximately thirty frames per second. From here, Smith claimed that the time-lapsed video created gaps in what actually happened and the jury should not have been allowed to see the evidence. Continue reading →