When can a wrongful death suit be filed for a bus accident?

Sending a child to school on a bus may be hard for some parents. However, parents trust that bus drivers will exercise the caution necessary to ensure that the child arrives at school and back home safely. Unfortunately, Kentucky parents' fears came true in October 2012 when a preschool bus veered off the road into a tree.

Recently, the Kentucky State Police disclosed that the driver was responsible for the bus accident that killed two kids in Carroll County. According to the state's report, "operator error" is main reason for the crash. When the driver tried to steer the vehicle back onto the road, however, tragedy struck. A combination of over-steering and slamming on the bus' brakes caused the bus to leave the roadway.

Unfortunately, two of the students on the bus that day, both 3 years old, didn't recover from their injuries. Two lives were cut short far too early, and now the families are likely trying to work through their grief.

When a driver's negligence causes a fatal motor vehicle accident, it may be possible for a victim's loved ones to pursue a wrongful death claim. This can allow the survivors to recoup the financial costs associated with the accident, in addition to compensating for grief and time lost with the victim.

Whether the bus in the Kentucky accident was operated by a private company or a public agency could impact how any personal injury claims proceed. Namely, the process to file a lawsuit against a public entity is typically different from what must be done to sue a private party. In this type of scenario, it may be best for the victims to determine their legal rights based on the details of the case.

Source: WHAS News, "KSP release cause of deadly bus accident in Carroll Co. in 2012," July 24, 2013

T.J. Smith, Attorney at Law
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Louisville, KY 40202

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