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Aurora Bus Accident Lawyer

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Michael Agruss

Written and Reviewed by Michael Agruss

  • Managing Partner and Personal Injury Lawyer at Mike Agruss Law.
  • Over 20 years of experience in Personal Injury.
  • Over 8000+ consumer rights cases settled.
  • Graduated from the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law: Juris Doctor, 2004.

Here at Mike Agruss Law, we proudly serve the citizens of the state of Illinois in personal injury cases, including when you or a loved one has suffered injury or wrongful death in a bus accident, and our attorneys are committed to protecting your rights and ensuring that the other party is held legally responsible when negligence occurs. We will fight to the end to make sure you receive full compensation for all injuries and losses, including medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, and you will owe us nothing for our services unless you win your case. Contact an Aurora bus accident attorney to schedule a free consultation and get the compensation you deserve.

Bus Accidents

A bus accident, due to the sheer size and force of the vehicle, can be much more serious than a car accident. Throughout the US, public transit ridership has increased by approximately 35% in the last twenty years. There are many contributing factors; for example, improved transit systems in metropolitan areas, greater environmental awareness, and more affordable modes of transportation.

However, accidents involving these buses have also increased and legal liability can be complex in these cases. Buses on highways, with the exception of school buses, generally fall into three categories: charter buses, commuter buses, and long-distance transit buses.

Commuter buses make frequent stops and travel at low speeds, while long-distance and charter buses often travel on highways at high speeds. Commuter bus accidents often involve pedestrians in high-traffic areas, while transit and charter bus accidents, especially on highways, can be catastrophic, resulting in multiple injuries and even deaths.

These buses are owned by private companies or by the municipal or county government. They are expected to ensure the safety of passengers, and in accidents that result in injury or wrongful death, it is likely that the company or government entity can be held legally responsible.

To be eligible for compensation, you must prove that the bus driver acted in a way that directly caused the accident and all of your injuries and losses. Common examples of driver negligence include driver fatigue, drug use, drunk driving, inattentiveness, and the rather broad “reckless driving.”

There can be a complex web of facts to unravel, and it is safe to assume that government entities and bus companies have powerful legal teams that specialize in avoiding blame and diverting it onto other entities. After an accident, you need experienced Aurora bus accident lawyers who can accurately reconstruct the accident and prove the other party’s negligence.

School Bus Accidents

School transportation-related accidents are defined as accidents directly or indirectly involving a school bus or non-school bus vehicle transporting children to or from school or school-related activities.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) collected ten-year data from 2004 to 2013, and in this time period 1,344 people (about 134 per year) were killed in bus-related crashes. Bus occupants accounted for only 8% of fatalities, while 21% were non-occupants (pedestrians, cyclists, etc.) and the majority (71%) were occupants of other vehicles involved in the accidents.


From 2004 to 2013, 327 school-age children lost their lives in accidents related to school transportation; 147 were occupants of other vehicles, 116 were pedestrians, 54 were school bus occupants; 9 were cyclists; and one was a non-occupant “other.”

Forty-two of these children (36%) were between the ages of 8 and 13.

More than two-thirds of school-age pedestrians killed were struck by a school transportation vehicle.

More than half of these fatal accidents (53%) involved impact to the front of the school transportation vehicle.

Common maneuvers that contributed to these accidents included passing another vehicle, traffic light violations, dangerous lane changes, and failure to stop.

When a school bus accident occurs, liability may be clear or, in some cases, quite difficult to determine, especially if the school or district contracts this transportation to a private bus company or employs its bus drivers in particular ways. Schools that own their buses have a legal duty to protect their students from harm, but if a school contracts this service to a private company, the contract between the two must specify the company’s duties.

Legal Standards

Some common federal and state standards for schools and private bus companies include:

Bus inspection at least semi-annually;

A “systematic preventive maintenance program” to keep buses in safe operating condition;

Daily pre-trip inspections of buses and safety equipment by their drivers and written reports of any malfunctions that may jeopardize the safe operation of the vehicle.

Bus Accident Claims

Some personal injury victims may be misled by insurers into thinking that immediate compensation can be received with minimal effort, but keep in mind that injury lawyers must meet multiple burdens to ensure a successful settlement. This is commonly known as a “chain of causation,” made up of four steps that show that the defendant was responsible for the plaintiff’s accident in a personal injury claim.

Here are the four links that bus accident victims must establish, similar to an auto accident, in successful bus accident cases:

1) Duty and Breach

This refers to a duty of care that the plaintiff owed to the defendant, which means the responsibility to act safely and cautiously so as not to create a safety hazard. For example, a reckless or drunk driving bus driver has breached his duty of care to drive safely on public roads.

2) Danger and Accident

This stage connects the accident directly to the safety hazard caused by the plaintiff’s breach of duty of care, such as when a reckless driver is at fault for an accident or someone slips on a wet floor where there was no warning sign.

3) Accidents and Injuries

For this link, personal testimony and medical documentation are needed to show that the plaintiff’s current injuries were the direct result of the recent accident and not a prior accident, illness or medical condition. When fall injuries occur but there is no connection, attorneys can use expert medical testimony to properly correlate the injuries.

4) Injuries and Damages

To connect injuries and damages, “special damages” such as medical expenses and lost wages can be proven with documentation such as pay stubs and invoices, while “general damages” are sometimes more difficult to prove. General damages are often subjective, but can be demonstrated by photographs, videos, and personal journals documenting the plaintiff’s injuries and loss of quality of life during recovery. Witness testimony, especially close relatives and friends, is also beneficial in establishing this link in the claim.

Call Our Aurora Bus Accident Attorneys Today

If you or a loved one has been injured in a bus accident, you need an experienced accident lawyer. Contact Mike Agruss Law for a free consultation. Our Chicago attorneys represent personal injury victims across the country, and helping our clients is about advising, advocating, and solving problems. With years of experience successfully representing the people and not the powerful, we will handle your case quickly and advise you every step of the way, and we will not hesitate to go to trial for you.

Lastly, our attorneys are not paid a fee unless we win your case. Our promise is this: you have nothing to risk when you hire us – only the opportunity to seek justice.

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We will respond to you at lightning speed. All of your information will be kept confidential.

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