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Actions To Take If You Get Injured While Using Public Transit

Bus companies would like each rider to stay seated for as long as possible and stand up in the transit vehicle only after it has come to a stop. Yet the pattern for boarding and exiting from a bus makes such behavior almost impossible.

A driver does not wait for each rider to get seated, after each of them has paid the fee or tapped the designated button. By the same token, not all riders sit in a spot where they can feel confident of making a quick exit at any approaching stop. Some need to stand up and move, in order to be in a position for making a fast exit. As a result, accidents can happen. Riders can get injured. In the event of an accident, a rider has certain responsibilities.

Responsibilities of an injured rider

• Get the bus operator’s information
• If possible, get license plate number of any other vehicle that was involved in the on-road incident.
• Speak with an injury lawyer in Airdrie. Plan to help with the collection of evidence.

Possible sources of evidence:

Statements from witnesses

Video footage for a security camera on the bus. In Alberta, a lawyer has the right to go after such footage by submitting a Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Request.

Potential sources of compensation for the injured rider:

If the bus driver caused the accident, the rider can sue the owner and operator of the transit system. In Alberta, that would mean suing the city. Usually, a bus is owned by a municipality. However, there are buses on transit lines in Los Angeles, CA that are owned by private citizens.

At this time there is no evidence that other cities have considered trying a similar system. The chances for that happening seem doubtful. That practice began when one of the former mayors in the City of the Angels sold a bus route and the associated buses to his daughter.

If another vehicle made contact with the bus, the injured rider can sue the company that has insured that vehicle’s driver. If that driver had swerved to keep from hitting a bike rider or a pedestrian, then the driver’s insurance company would have to go after that same pedestrian or cyclist.

Understand though, that the insurance company’s right to launch its own lawsuit would not remove its responsibility for compensating the injured rider. The company’s chances for winning its own lawsuit would depend on presentation of evidence that it had come forward with the requested compensation. In other words, it would have to provide a judge and jury with proof of the fact that it had made the payment of compensation.