Articles Posted in Car-Bus Accidents

We’ve said it here before, but it bears repeating; When it comes to riding on public transportation — be it a city bus or your child’s school bus — there is always potential for personal injury due to a traffic accident. Being hurt while traveling by bus, train or plane is always possible, but it’s not unusual for most people to assume that public transport is safe.

As commuters, our belief that bus and train operators are trained professionals who go about their duties with their passengers’ safety and well being foremost in mind. As Maryland auto accident lawyers and Washington, D.C., personal injury attorneys, we understand how parents expect that their children will be safe and sound when riding local school buses. Sadly, this is not always the case.

In this not-so-perfect world, car, bus and motorcycle collisions do occur; and with disturbing frequency, especially in congested urban areas such as Baltimore, Annapolis and the District. When riding public transport, we as passengers put our faith in those running bus lines, railroads and airlines. When it comes to school-age kids, we also know that safety is a concern of most every parent.

When it comes to road accidents, many people might think that a school bus, metropolitan commuter bus, or charter van would be rather safe when compared to a smaller private motor vehicle, such as a sedan, minivan or SUV; however, this is not necessarily the case. Recent commercial transport bus accidents have made the newspapers over the past year, illustrating how serious a charter bus wreck can be.

Passengers can receive a range of injuries when a city or overland bus crashes into a stationary object, such as a bridge abutment, traffic sign stanchion, or stalled semi tractor-trailer rig. From bumps and bruises to closed head injuries, these traffic accidents can result in long-term disability and sometimes death. As Maryland auto accident attorneys and personal injury lawyers, I and my staff understand how a seemingly simple crash can turn into a medical emergency for more than one occupant riding on a commercial motor coach.

Not long ago, an Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) bus was involved in a traffic accident along a stretch of Philadelphia Road in Baltimore Co. The ensuing collision sent a dozen of the bus’ occupants to the hospital with mostly minor injuries. The interesting aspect of this particular wreck is the vehicle that hit the city bus, a Kia passenger vehicle, was many times smaller than the commuter vehicle. Had that vehicle been a larger delivery truck or commercial big rig truck, the outcome may have been much more serious.

Downsville Pike was the scene of a three-vehicle accident near Hagerstown that resulted in three people being injured. One the vehicles involved in the collision, which occurred on a Thursday morning, was a school bus servicing Washington County schools, although no students were aboard that vehicle at the time of the collision.

As Maryland personal injury attorneys, we can understand how parents worry about incidents like this. School buses, like city buses, can carry a large number of passengers, which means that if the vehicle is hit or somehow is involved in a traffic accident, those occupants are at risk for injury. Although every situation is different, depending on various factors such accidents can result in passengers sustaining cuts and bruises, simple and compound fractures of the arm or leg, head and neck injuries and sometimes traumatic brain injuries.

In this case, police reports indicate that the accident was apparently the result of a passenger car driver failing to yield to another motor vehicle. Based on news articles, the crash occurred shortly past 9am when a southbound Honda driven by an elderly woman turned left directly in front of an oncoming Kia sport utility vehicle at the intersection of Downsville Pike and W. Oak Ridge Dr.

Bodily injuries suffered as a result of an automobile accident can range from minor cuts and bruises, to broken bones and closed-head injuries. The latter, also referred to as traumatic brain injuries, can spell serious trouble for victims of traffic collisions. Yet as scary as head trauma can be, the recovery can turn out to be quite amazing, according to some experts.

As a Baltimore car and truck accident lawyer and Maryland personal injury attorney, I and my colleagues have seen the aftermath of many car, truck and motorcycle wrecks, as well as the human toll. But as the story of U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords has shown, the road to recovery from traumatic brain injury can be just this side of miraculous.

While it’s surely too early to tell — according to medical professionals a patient’s progress in this area is best measured at the six- to 12-month mark following a closed-head injury — Ms. Giffords progress shows that there is hope for many people who have suffered serious trauma to the brain.

It’s a good bet that most people never consider the possibility of being injured while riding on public transit, yet traffic accidents involving city buses, commuter trains and taxi cabs occur every day across the country, in cities like Baltimore, Annapolis and even the District. Although safety measures are in place to help avoid injuries, collisions between buses, commercial trucks and passenger cars can and do happen with alarming frequency.

As a Maryland personal injury lawyer, I know that accidents involving buses, taxis and limousines can result in serious injuries, such as broken arms and legs, cracked collar bones and ribs, skull fractures and spinal injuries. Depending on the road conditions, a bus or taxi cab accident can even result in death — fatal wrecks like these are the most heart-rending and regrettable accidents, since the victims usually have a fair expectation of safety when being transported by professionals.

Not long ago, a Hagerstown driver died when his pickup truck collided with a city bus along Interstate 70 near Big Pool, MD. According to Maryland State Police, 69-year-old Ray Linebaugh was apparently traveling westbound in his 2004 Dodge Ram when for some reason the vehicle veered into the median, crossing over into the eastbound lanes of I-70 and collided with a Megabus that was broken down on the roadside with mechanical problems.

Being personal injury lawyers representing individuals in Maryland and Washington D.C., our office sees the sad results of car, truck and SUV accidents every month. Although many traffic collisions do not cause fatalities, these kinds of auto wrecks can produce serious and long-term injury to one or more passengers in a vehicle. Pedestrians as well can be affected by car and truck accidents in city centers.

Cuts and bruises are the most minor of injuries, but during high-speed collisions head, neck and spinal damage can easily be sustained by the occupants of a vehicle. While seatbelts and airbags do provide a fair amount of protection, severe and sometimes fatal injuries often do occur.

Tramatic Brain InjuriesHead injuries, many times referred to as traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are very commonplace in emergency rooms across Maryland and the rest of the U.S. More than a million people receive some kind of TBI every year as a result of a car, minivan, SUV or pickup truck crash. Traumatic brain injuries are usually caused by a blow to the head, quite uncommon in medium- to high-speed car or truck accidents. The impact from such a crash can cause a disruption of the brain’s neurological functions, the severity of which can range from a mild concussion to severe brain damage, coma, or even death.

Some have likely heard this said: “That wasn’t such a bad traffic accident; the damage to the vehicle was minimal.” If you haven’t, then you probably have not dealt with an insurance company as a plaintiff in an injury case. Having represented hundreds of victims of car, truck or sport utility vehicle (SUV) crashes, my firm understands that it is quite easy to be seriously hurt in an automobile accident even though the repairs to the vehicle don’t amount to much at all.

This is a case of major bodily injuries, yet relatively minor vehicle or property damage. Sadly, this familiar, yet deceptive argument is used very frequently by defense attorneys and insurance companies when auto collisions are concerned. And it’s one of the best reasons to consult a personal injury lawyer experienced in the area of auto accident law.

Whether you live in Baltimore, Annapolis, Columbia or the D.C. area, car accidents can occur most anywhere, some of them with devastating consequences. Insurance companies many times will try to downplay the extent of an accident to try to justify a reduced settlement to the injured parties. This is done sometimes by introducing evidence in the form of distorted, grainy or out-of-focus photos showing minor vehicle or property damage.

But this is done without offering any expert testimony regarding the direct and causal relationship between the extent of the property damage and the victim’s bodily injuries. Brain trauma as well as neck injuries can occur even when a vehicle has sustained minimal outward damage itself. Yet every year, hundreds of auto accident victims settle for less than what they deserve due to these kinds of tactics.

The purpose of the defense is to disprove, usually by false implication, what has been proven by medical evidence and expert testimony — typically by a licensed physician. It’s easy to forget how much energy is released – or inflicted on a victim’s body — as a result of a traffic accident. Yet insurance company attorneys will usually make no mention of the sudden and very high energy forces that are transmitted throughout a motor vehicle in the milliseconds following a collision.

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Depending on the speed of a car or truck accident, injuries to the occupants of the vehicles can be substantial. Seatbelts, also known as safety belts, provide a first line of defense against severe injury or death. Bus accidents are particularly dangerous since passengers rarely use or even have seatbelts available to them. Being a Maryland auto accident and personal injury lawyer, I know how critical using seatbelts is to passenger survival.

According to a recent news report, eight people were injured as a result of a bus-car crash in Baltimore, MD. The motor vehicle accident occurred in the early morning of December 19. Based on that report, Maryland police personnel along with EMS emergency crews arrived at the accident scene not long after the crash. The bus involved in the wreck was carrying individuals with special needs, according to police.

The crash, which took place at 8am on the 3200 block of Philadelphia Road in Baltimore, was apparently caused by a small passenger sedan that had rear-ended a taxi, which had stopped on the road prior to the accident. Police reported that following the collision, the sedan subsequently crossed the road’s center line, heading into the oncoming traffic lane where it struck the special needs bus.

A potentially deadly situation occurred recently when a pickup pulled out in front of a loaded St. Mary’s County school bus on Great Mills Road. Auto accidents involving school buses can ofter result in injury to numerous children riding in the vehicle. I’m well aware of this as a Maryland automobile accident lawyer. In this case, the kids onboard were not injured, although the man driving the pickup truck apparently remained hospitalized following the crash.

The traffic wreck occurred just before 7am on the morning of Wednesday, December 16, when a 1999 Dodge truck driven by 55-year-old resident of Lexington Park failed to yield to the school bus. According to reports, William Woodley Dyson pulled out of Prather Drive directly into the path of the oncoming school bus, which then hit the man’s pickup truck.

According to the sheriff’s office, five children and the bus driver, 31-year-old Torri Lavore Hall of Lexington Park, were taken by ambulance to St. Mary’s Hospital for evaluation, while the pickup driver was flown via Maryland State Police Trooper 7 helicopter to Prince George’s Shock Trauma.

More than 20 Maryland residents received various injuries on Saturday, June 6, when the MTA city bus they were riding in was hit by a Chevrolet Malibu in Baltimore County. The Route 20 bus was traveling toward Security Square when the driver of the Malibu apparently lost control and slammed into the larger vehicle at an intersection in West Baltimore.

The incident occurred at the intersection of West Baltimore and Carey streets. Although details of the car-bus accident have not yet been released — the investigation is ongoing — crashes like this can be the result of a number of possible causes. Driver error — for example inattention, confusing the accelerator with the brake pedal, or driving under the influence of alcohol — is such cause. Another common area is a vehicle mechanical problem, such as poorly maintained brakes, failure of the steering system, or even a blown tire.

Regardless of the cause in this case, nearly a dozen innocent passengers on the bus were hurt as a consequence of the accident. Many of those riders were taken to three different hospitals in the Baltimore area for treatment of their personal injuries. No one was killed in the accident, but the driver of the car was badly injured and was taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center. As part of the police investigation, the bus driver was given a required examination for alcohol or drugs.

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