We as New Yorkers use mass transit vehicles all the time. Nearly 6 million passengers were transported in our subway system on an average weekday and the annual total ridership for 2015 was 1.7 billion passengers. Our famous JFK airport is one of the busiest in the world and handled nearly 59 million passengers in 2016. While we mostly get through our commute unscathed, we still stand the chance of getting injured and facing a personal injury complaint.
While mass transit accidents are not that common, a host of injuries can be sustained during a bus, train or plane accident. Think cuts, bruises, whiplash, fractures, head injuries, head trauma, heart failures due to shock and loss of limbs, depending on how serious the accident was.
The scope of mass transit accidents
Mass transit cases can range widely in scope. It can be as small as an individual getting stuck in the gap between the vehicle and the platform or as large as a catastrophic event such as abus crash. Mass transportation accidents also include trips, slips and falls on the premises of mass transportation providers. The scope of the case will determine how your personal injury lawyer will go about the case. In the case of an accident where you were injured as an individual, your lawyer will help you file a civil suit against the responsible party. In the case of a larger accident involving multiple plaintiffs, your lawyer will guide you through a class action suit.
Types of mass transit accidents
While the thought of mass transit accidents usually meanders to trains derailing and aircrafts crashing towards the ground, there are many other more garden variety mass transit accidents that happen all over New York City. Common types of mass transit accidents include the following:
- Passenger injuries suffered in a motor vehicle accident involving a bus or train
- Injuries sustained at bus stops, subway stations or on platforms
- Accidents suffered while boarding or exiting a bus or train
- Motorist injuries suffered in collisions with buses or trains
- Accidents involving intercity buses, charter buses or privately owned buses
- School bus accidents
- Accidents involving taxis or cab drivers
- Limousine accidents
- Collisions involving hospitality or courtesy vans, airport limos, shuttle buses or similar vehicles
Proving that the transport companies are at fault
As with any personal injuries case, you will have to be able to prove that the train or aircraft company was at fault. This could be due to equipment failure due to faulty parts or due to human error on the part of the driver or pilot or due to poor maintenance. In any event, the train or aircraft company owe you a duty of providing a safe traveling environment and if they have been negligent in any way, you may have grounds to file a personal injuries case. Public transport carriers are supposed to ensure that they take proper mechanical care of their vehicles and to ensure that they have highly trained staff operating their vehicles. Furthermore, they have to have the necessary security measures in check to ensure safe boarding and using of their vehicles.
Actions to take when you are involved in a mass transit accident
What should you do if you were involved in a mass transit accident? Your main priority should be to get medical attention. Otherwise, it’s a good idea to take pictures and make as many notes as possible about the event while it is still fresh in your mind. Getting the contact details of fellow passengers or eye-witnesses can also help your case. Also, keep a record of all medical treatments that you have had to undergo.
Be aware of time constraints
If you do decide to file a complaint, you have to be aware of the time constraints. You only have 90 days after the accident to file a notice of complaint with the public transport authority. If you miss this timeline, you will not be able to file a personal injury case to claim compensation for medical bills, wages lost or damages due to personal pain and suffering. If you contact a personal injury lawyer immediately after the accident, he will be able to guide you through the process in time.
Hiring an experienced mass transit accident lawyer
Getting a personal injuries lawyer who is experienced in mass transit cases is imperative. Especially in the case of aviation accidents, there are multiple federal agencies who are involved in sorting out the aftermath of the accident and only a personal injuries lawyer with experience in aviation accidents and sound knowledge of aviation laws will be able to help you to get proper compensation for your losses suffered.
Remember that the public transport companies have legal teams at who can come to their defense ferociously. It’s equally important that you get an aggressive and experienced personal injury lawyer to take your case. You will want to work with someone with experience in mass transport cases someone who not only knows how to jump through all the legal hoops but also know how the defendant’s lawyers will attempt to present their case. Here at Linden Law, we can provide exactly that: expert legal representatives who are able to stand their ground in order to get you the compensation that you deserve.
Linden Law is a well-established law firm with a strong history of winning personal injury cases. Whether you have been hurt in a subway station or have been involved in a bus accident, we will be by your side all the way. We provide free consultations for all personal injury cases and will gladly review your case to see if you will be able to claim compensation against the entity responsible for the accident. With Linden Law, there is no reason to be left in the lurch after a mass transit accident. We’ve got your back.