Child Injury from School Bus Accidents
A recent survey found that there are approximately 23 million children who travel on school buses during the school year. Of those 23 million children, nearly 17,000 are injured every day in school bus accidents. Although they transport our children and travel on all types of roads, from rural country roads to interstate highways, school buses are not required to have seatbelts, airbags, or other safety systems that are now routinely found in automobiles. While the overall design has improved over the years, children still remain very vulnerable in a school bus accident.
The theory is that buses are large trucks, and passengers are placed high above the road. In the event of an impact, the offending car will strike at a lower level than the children. Also, by painting them bright yellow and installing lots of flashing red lights and even strobes on the back, the hope is other drivers on the road will see the school bus and take heed. Of course, the best plans can always be defeated by an inattentive car driver or overly fatigued school bus driver. And who pays the highest price in a school bus accident? Our children do.
Child injury attorney Robert J. Reeves has personally handled serious school bus accident cases. A few years ago, a Charlotte school bus overturned on the interstate. Because the children were not restrained in seat belts, many were injured when they were tossed in the air while the school bus was rolling over. Fortunately, most of the kids were fine with just a few bruises. However, our client who was initially cleared by the emergency room had to be rushed back later that night for emergency brain surgery from an undiagnosed serious head injury. When he became lethargic and starting vomiting, his parents knew something was wrong and took immediate actions that ultimately saved their child’s life.
The lesson to be learned here is that in an accident, but especially in unrestrained school bus accidents, you have to make sure your child is medically fine. If there is even a hint of a head impact, an MRI or CT scan should be actively pursued. Broken bones are easy to spot, but head injuries may not be evident in the initial period after an accident. After you are certain your child is going to be alright, you should then contact an experienced child injury attorney to see what legal options are available. You’ll feel better knowing you have done everything to protect your child when others do not.