Bus accident in Calumet Park sends 16 passengers to hospital

Commuters around Chicago use buses for the convenience, the cost savings and the environmental benefits. Companies that operate buses, including the Chicago Transit Authority, owe passengers a special duty to ensure their safety. The applicable legal standard of care requires them to keep up with vehicle maintenance and to hire responsible and competent drivers.

Occasionally, however, bus accidents do happen. Many passengers can be injured in a collision because they are standing up, reading a paper, using their phone or otherwise not braced for an impact. This potential for multiple injuries makes it all the more important for bus drivers to proceed with caution on the city’s roads.

One recent crash displayed what can happen when a crowded bus ends up in an accident. Early on Monday afternoon, a Pace bus and a car were involved in a collision in Calumet Park. Details on what led to the crash were sparse, but of the 36 passengers on board, 16 were taken to the hospital for treatment. According to a Pace spokesman, their injuries were not considered life-threatening. Calumet Park Police have not issued a statement on the accident yet.

Bus carriers must have large insurance policies to prepare for the instances where many passengers suffer harm in a collision. But in some crashes, the number of injured passengers is so great and the injuries sustained are so severe, that the insurance policy may be insufficient to cover all costs. Bus passengers should know their legal rights to obtain the compensation that they need as they seek treatment for, and recover from, their injuries.

Source: Chicago Sun-Times, “16 injured in Pace bus crash,” Nov. 6, 2012