What to Do if You’re Injured on Public Transportation

by Staff Blogger | April 8th, 2024

Public transportation is a convenient and cost-effective way to travel for millions of people in California. The state’s monthly ridership was around 60 million in 2022, a rebound from lower numbers during 2020.

Despite the relative safety and convenience of public transportation, accidents can happen. In 2023, 14 people were injured when a transit bus crashed into a restaurant in Long Beach. That same year, a Metro bus rolled backward into a retaining wall, injuring three passengers.

Knowing how to respond if you’re in a public transportation accident is vital to your immediate well-being and potential legal implications. A California public transit injury lawyer from Berg Injury Lawyers can help you understand your rights and get fair compensation after a crash.

Immediate Steps to Take After an Injury

Your actions after a crash involving public transportation in California can safeguard your right to potential legal actions. These cases involve governmental authorities, which can mean taking extra steps to preserve evidence and report the incident.

Here’s what you should do after a public transit collision:

Step to TakeWhat to Do
Seek Immediate Medical AttentionCheck for injuries and call 911 for emergency medical assistance.Accept medical help at the scene, even if injuries seem minor, as symptoms may appear later.Visit a healthcare provider for a thorough examination after the incident.  
Report the IncidentInform the driver or transportation staff about the incident as soon as it’s safe.Contact the transportation company’s customer service to report the crash.File a police report of the accident within 10 days and get a copy of the document.
Document DetailsTake photographs or videos of the crash site, including visible injuries and damages.Write down everything you remember about the crash, including the time, location, and events leading up to the incident.Record all information regarding the bus/vehicle number, company, driver, and other identifiers.
Preserve EvidenceKeep any clothing or personal belongings damaged in the crash in the same condition they were found.Save all medical records, receipts, and other documents related to the crash and your injuries.  
Gather Witness InformationCollect names, addresses, and phone numbers of other passengers and any bystanders who witnessed the crash.Ask witnesses to write down what they saw and provide their contact information for future reference.  
File an Incident ReportSubmit a detailed incident report to the transportation company and relevant regulatory bodies.
Speak With an AttorneyConsult a legal professional experienced in personal injury or transportation law as soon as possible.An attorney can provide guidance on your rights, help with the claims process, and represent your interests when dealing with insurers and government entities.  

Understanding Public Transportation and Liability

In a standard vehicle accident, victims in California can typically file for compensation against the party who caused the crash. This involves gathering evidence, submitting a claim with their liability insurance, and receiving a settlement.

In crashes involving government entities, liability can be more complex. California’s Tort Claims Act can make it more difficult to sue municipal or public-run programs or employees. In addition to requiring extra steps for filing a claim, it requires you to prove that your injuries resulted from negligence or misconduct by the government entity, such as speeding or failing to maintain bus equipment.

How a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help

A personal injury lawyer with experience handling public transportation cases can help you seek a fair settlement for your injuries. Our team at Berg Injury Lawyers can do the following to help you get the recovery award you deserve:

  • Investigate the Accident: We collect evidence such as surveillance footage, police reports, and witness statements to build a strong case. Our team can work with accident reconstruction experts to establish fault and liability.
  • Handle All Communications: We deal with the transportation company, insurance adjusters, and other parties involved on your behalf to ensure your rights are protected.
  • Navigate Legal and Regulatory Challenges: We understand and apply state laws governing public transportation accidents, protecting your right to sue for damages.
  • Secure Fair Compensation: Our attorneys can calculate and negotiate settlements that cover medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
  • Represent You in Court: We can take your case to trial to fight for the compensation you deserve.

Contact Berg Injury Lawyers After a Public Transportation Accident

Injuries sustained on public transportation can have physical and legal consequences. Knowing the proper steps immediately after an incident is crucial for protecting your health and legal rights.

If you’re considering pursuing a personal injury claim, contact Berg Injury Lawyers today. Our experienced team can help you get the compensation you’re owed. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your case and learn how we can help you protect your right to compensation.