Bus Crash Injures More Than Two Dozen Passengers Despite Stricter FMCA Regulation of Bus Lines
When people ride a tour bus or charter bus, passengers have little choice but to trust that the buses have been properly maintained and that the drivers have the experience and driving record to safely transport the public. Unfortunately, a slew of bus accidents across the U.S. over the last several years has exposed an emerging trend of renegade tour bus and charter bus companies operating buses despite poor maintenance records and multiple regulatory violations by the busing company and its drivers. This wave of bus accidents has motivated the Federal Motor Carrier Administration (FMCA) to enact new regulations designed to more closely monitor bus companies with a pattern of safety violations.
A charter bus accident on a snow covered road this month serves as a reminder of the danger posed to passengers and other motorists when bus companies fail to comply with safety regulations regarding inspections and maintenance of their buses, as well as qualifications and performance of their bus drivers. A Pennsylvania tour bus accident reported widely by the national media caused injury to twenty passengers according to an Associated Press report. State police indicated that the bus driver lost control of the vehicle before slamming into a snow embankment. Twenty-two patients were treated for minor injuries while three others suffered more serious injury.
While law enforcement officers did not indicate the estimated speed that the bus was traveling when the driver lost control, the state police indicated that bus operator was driving "at a speed that was greater than is reasonable and prudent for the condition," according to the state police report. While the posted speed limit represents a maximum speed in optimal road and weather conditions, drivers are expected to adjust their speed when navigating their way through hazardous conditions like wet or icy roads.
While no information has been released to this point regarding the safety record of the busing company or driver, these accidents can occur when rogue bus companies continue to operate despite a history of regulatory violations and accidents. There has been in excess of a dozen charter bus accidents during the last several years. New regulations issued in the wake of this wave of bus crashes makes it easier for federal regulators to shut down busing companies with an established pattern of safety violations.
According to Dan Ronan of the American Bus Association, "FMCA now has greater authority to shut down motor coach companies that the Department of Transportation believes are chronic trouble makers, such as companies that break the rules and companies that do not comply with safety standards."
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If you or someone close to you is injured in a bus crash caused by a bus that has not been properly serviced or a bus operator with a driving history that indicates the driver is unqualified, this may provide a basis for seeking financial compensation from the tour bus or charter bus company. Our Atlanta Accident Attorneys at Montlick and Associates have been representing those who suffer serious injuries for over thirty years throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.