More than a dozen people were injured earlier this week when a tour bus driving through Southern California crashed into a drainage ditch, fence, and light pole. The bus remained upright which may have limited the injuries to the passengers who were trapped briefly before rescue workers were able to unblock the door of the bus. There were about 40 passengers on board the bus at the time of the accident, most of the injuries were reported to be minor, although it is not clear if any of the passengers experienced whiplash or other head or neck injuries. Sometimes these types of injuries are not immediately apparent but aches and pains in the days and weeks following a crash can reveal signs of whiplash or other serious injuries.
This accident was the fourth in as many days. Three other crashes occurred in California involving tour buses within the past week, leading to two fatalities and dozens of injuries. The crashes raise some serious questions about the tour bus industry and whether these companies are complying with relevant safety standards and properly training their drivers to avoid serious crashes.
Bus companies have a heightened duty as a common carrier to take steps to try to prevent accidents and keep paying customers safe. Accidents happen, but when passengers are injured as a result of a driver or bus company’s negligence, the company has a responsibility under the law to make things right. This often means providing compensation for medical expenses and other such costs that come along when one is involved in a motor vehicle accident.
Source: Huffington Post, “13 Hurt in Fourth California Tour Bus Crash in a Week,” Dec, 23, 2013.