Riding in a school bus continues to be the safest way for a child to get to and from school, but accidents, injuries and fatalities sometimes occur when school buses are involved in accidents. The school bus crash in Mount Olive Township here in New Jersey was beyond a tragedy. It was a nightmare. The bus driver, 7 adults and 39 fifth-grade passengers were involved in a crash with a dump truck on Interstate 80. Regardless of the fact that New Jersey law requires school bus drivers and passengers to be seat belted, a teacher and a student were both killed. It was reported that many of the kids in the school bus were left hanging from their seat belts when the bus came to rest. More than 40 others were injured. Some of those injuries were severe and warranted emergency surgery.
Was the Paramus School Bus Making a U-turn?
Sources say that a Department of Transportation traffic camera showing two of the school busses exiting the highway, but one bus was said to have missed the exit. When that bus driver apparently realized that he’d missed it, some believe that he cut over traffic lanes and tried to make a U-turn ahead in a turning area that was designated solely for the use of emergency vehicles.
The investigation into how the crash happened continues.
Assuming the final findings of the investigation are consistent with the preliminary reports , nearly all liability for the deaths and injuries of the school bus passengers would be attributable to the school bus driver. A portion could also fall on the dump truck driver. It’s expected that when wrongful death and personal injury claims are made, they will be brought against both drivers, their employers, the school district and possibly even the manufacturer of the school bus.
What you should know about school bus accidents:
Families of deceased and injured victims in New Jersey school bus crashes need to be made aware of the fact that their right to seek compensation from a school district must be invoked right away. Ordinarily, there’s a two year statute of limitations in a personal injury case in New Jersey. If an insurance claim doesn’t settle within that time, and an accident victim fails to file his or her lawsuit within those two years, it’s highly likely that he or she will not be allowed to proceed further. If you’re intending on making a wrongful death or personal injury claim against a school district, a different and even stricter set of rules applies.
When a school bus passenger has died or has been injured as a result of the carelessness and negligence of their driver, and the victim’s family intends on proceeding in a personal injury claim or lawsuit against that school district, a proper and timely claim notice must be filed. Few people know about this requirement. Failure to properly draft or timely file such a notice is highly likely to be cause for dismissal of any wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit against a school district. Regardless of the fact that the statute of limitations on a New Jersey personal injury case is two years, that claim notice must be filed within 90 days of the date of the accident. After that, the claimant must wait six months from the date of filing of the claim notice to bring a lawsuit.
Contacting a New Jersey School Bus Accident Lawyer:
Hopefully you or a loved one of yours is never involved in a bus accident. However, if you intend to proceed against a school district in a school bus accident anywhere in New Jersey, contact our offices to arrange for a free consultation and case evaluation with an experienced and effective New Jersey school bus accident lawyer from our offices. We have handled bus accidents in the past.