Buses are supposed to get us safely from A to B, whether public transit, school buses, airport shuttles, or others. When a driver or public transit authority fails to keep passengers safe, they could be liable for your damages. 

The aftermath of a bus accident can be painful and stressful, and the prospect of taking legal action may seem overwhelming. However, if you suffered an injury or a loved one passed away due to a bus accident in Belleville, you could be entitled to damages such as medical bills, pain and suffering, and wage loss.

You don’t have to fight alone. A Belleville, IL bus accident lawyer at Bradley Law can protect your rights and pursue full and fair compensation. Get started now and contact us for a free case review.

How Common Are Bus Accidents?

Bus accidents are relatively common in the US, with almost 50,000 crashes recorded nationwide in 2021 alone. Large buses can be awkward to maneuver and challenging to control, particularly in inclement weather and at higher speeds. When accidents occur, they can affect not only bus passengers but also cyclists, pedestrians, and passenger vehicle occupants. 

Bus accidents are also common in Belleville and Illinois. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), the state saw 3,188 bus accidents in 2021, involving eight fatalities and over 576 injured passengers.

Causes of Belleville Bus Accidents

Human error and carelessness play a significant factor in many motor vehicle crashes. However, road conditions and lack of vehicle maintenance can also contribute to bus crashes. Here are some of the most common causes of bus accidents in Belleville: 

Bus Driver Negligence 

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), human error causes most motor vehicle crashes. Negligent driving behaviors can include driving intoxicated, speeding, and ignoring traffic signs and signals. 

Bus drivers have a duty of care towards their passengers and other road users and must adhere to state and federal laws. If you were involved in an accident where a bus driver acted carelessly, you could have legal recourse and recover compensation.

Bus Defects

Defective or faulty bus components, such as brakes, tires, lights, and safety features, can lead to severe accidents with injuries and fatalities. If a defective bus caused your accident, the vehicle or part manufacturer could be responsible for your damages. 

Road Hazards

A local government agency responsible for road maintenance may be responsible for your damages if a hazardous road condition leads to the crash. Dangerous road conditions can include potholes, construction zones, inadequate signage, and others. 

Bad Weather

Inclement weather, such as rain, fog, snow, or ice, can reduce visibility and traction and make driving conditions treacherous. Bus drivers must adapt their speed and driving behavior to prevent accidents during bad weather.

Dropping Off Passengers Unsafely

Occasionally, bus passengers get injured when a driver drops them off in the middle of a busy road, behind an intersection, or at other unsafe locations. If this has happened to you, you may have a bus accident claim. 

Negligent Bus Company

Bus companies or public transit authorities can be responsible for crashes in several ways, including:

  • Negligent hiring and training of drivers
  • Failing to repair and service buses 
  • Neglecting to implement or enforce safety policies

Bus accidents are rarely as straightforward as car accidents, and they can involve numerous liable parties. Moreover, if you were hurt on public transportation in Belleville, you could have a case against a government agency, entailing additional administrative hurdles. Working with an experienced Belleville, IL bus accident lawyer can be critical for the success of your bus accident claim. 

Who Is Liable in a Bus Accident Claim?

If you’re pursuing compensation for your bus accident injuries and damages in Belleville, you’ll have to prove the responsible party’s negligence. Bus accidents potentially involve numerous responsible parties. Here are some of the potential defendants in your bus accident claim:

  • The bus driver
  • The company or government agency operating the bus
  • A mechanic or repair shop
  • Drivers of other vehicles involved in the crash
  • Bus manufacturers
  • Government entities responsible for maintaining roads

Proving negligence can be challenging and typically requires thoroughly investigating the circumstances of the accident. Understanding the crash and assigning fault and liability may involve hiring industry experts. Bradley Law Personal Injury Lawyers can assist in establishing proof of operator negligence or third-party liability. 

How a Belleville, IL Bus Accident Lawyer Can Help

When you or a loved one is involved in a bus accident, failing to hire an experienced attorney can lead to leaving money on the table. You may have to stand up to a government entity, powerful corporation, or large insurers who will try to minimize your compensation. 

A strong advocate can represent your best interests and negotiate effectively for fair compensation. Here’s what our Belleville, IL bus accident lawyers can do for you: 

  • Level the Playing Field: Insurance companies typically put up a fight and may even resort to manipulative tactics, such as questioning your injuries and getting you to say something that could be used against you. They may try to deny or reduce the settlement you deserve. Our attorneys can negotiate directly with the insurer to protect you and ensure you are treated fairly.
  • Investigate the Bus Accident: We can comprehensively investigate your bus accident in Belleville. This can include using accident reconstruction professionals and other experts, as well as gathering evidence to prove your claim. 
  • File Your Lawsuit: Our attorneys can take care of all the legal aspects of your case, including filing the necessary court documents and ensuring you aren’t missing any critical deadlines.
  • Represent You at Trial: We can use our legal expertise and courtroom experience to your advantage and strongly present your case to a judge or jury.

Bradley Law knows the time after an accident can feel overwhelming and stressful for victims. Our attorneys are dedicated to supporting you every step of the way, from the beginning of your case until you receive your settlement check. We aim to hold the responsible parties accountable and ensure you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries and financial losses. 

Bus Accident Victims in Belleville Could Receive Compensation

Bus collisions can cause severe and disabling injuries that could result in victims requiring ongoing medical care. Some individuals may never return to their careers or could see their life quality and financial stability significantly impacted. If you’re affected and another is responsible for the bus accident, you could be entitled to various damages, including:

  • Healthcare expenses and future medical costs
  • Loss of earnings and future income
  • Medical devices, such as wheelchairs or crutches
  • Transportation expenses
  • In-home care and assistance 
  • Pain and suffering
  • Reduced quality of life

If your loved one died due to their bus accident injuries, you could qualify for a wrongful death lawsuit and receive compensation. Damages can include burial expenses and loss of income and can help ease the financial burden due to your loved one’s passing. 


When should I hire an attorney for a bus accident claim?

If you or a loved one suffered severe injuries in an accident involving a bus, speak to a Belleville, IL bus accident lawyer as soon as possible. They can:

  • Preserve crucial evidence 
  • Gather vital witness statements while memories are fresh
  • Ensure you meet all deadlines for filing your claim
  • Assess the full impact of an injury on your life and career
  • Determine the value of your case

Even if you don’t file a personal injury lawsuit, an attorney can clarify your options and legal rights, allowing you to make informed decisions. They can also handle communication with insurance companies on your behalf, protecting you from accepting a lowball settlement offer. 

Having effective legal representation from the outset of your bus accident claim can significantly increase your chances of obtaining maximum compensation.

How long do I have to file a bus accident lawsuit in Belleville, IL?

According to 735 Illinois Compiled Statutes section 5/13-202, you must file a personal injury lawsuit within two years in the state. However, the time required to file a bus accident lawsuit can vary depending on who you are suing and other details of your case.

For example, if you have a case against a government entity, such as a local public transit provider, you may only have one short year to file a suit and pursue damages. There can also be rare exceptions that could extend the statute, such as when the victim is a minor or was incapacitated and unable to file suit during the two years.  

Consulting with a Belleville, IL bus accident lawyer as soon as possible after your bus accident can be crucial to determine how long you have to file a claim. Remember, failing to file within the statute of limitations could result in the loss of your right to pursue compensation.

Contact Bradley Law Personal Injury Lawyers Today

Don’t wait to learn about your legal options after getting involved in a bus accident, as you may have limited time to file a claim and recover damages. Our Belleville, IL bus accident lawyers are here to empower you and help you get what you deserve. 

We have over thirty years of experience helping the injured, and have recovered millions in damages for our clients and families. We could help you, too, get back on your feet financially, physically, and emotionally. Get in touch today for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn about your rights and the next best steps.