School bus drivers are responsible for driving children thousands of miles each year in New York. As a result of this volume, it is a sad reality that a bus may be involved in a car accident or two over the course of the school year. A recent report found that school buses in New York City were involved in approximately 1,700 accidents in 2011.
The reported accidents are the equivalent of nearly five accidents a day. These accidents resulted in about 900 injuries. It is unclear how many of those were characterized as serious injuries.
The report also disclosed that some bus contractors, despite a small amount of routes, had a significantly higher ratio of accidents than other companies. One contractor was reported to have been involved in one accident for every two routes. However, some officials believe that the numbers are misleading, as the accident figures included all collisions, even those that were classified as minor fender benders.
Children are owed a duty of reasonable care. Bus drivers are required to operate their bus in a safe manner so as to avoid an increased risk of being involved in a car accident. When this does not occur, injured children and their parents retain the right to pursue a lawsuit in a New York civil court for damages against the bus company. If the evidence documents that the driver was negligent in a manner that caused or contributed to an accident, our courts will entertain demands for reimbursement of monetary damages claimed to have been sustained.
Source: DNAinfo.com, “City’s Public School Buses Were Involved In 1,700 Accidents Last Year,” Jill Colvin, Dec. 10, 2012