Bus driver’s illegal U-turn responsible for violent collision

Written on behalf of Abramson Smith Waldsmith LLP

When mass transit companies hire drivers to man their fleet, they often require that each candidate provide adequate proof that they are eligible to be driving legally in California. Along with this confirmation, they require their drivers to undergo so much training to verify that their driving skills and awareness are in line with company policies and requirements. However, a closer look at a person’s driving history including a thorough background check, is often not required by many transit companies. 

This could all change with the significant push in awareness created by a father who suffered a traumatic loss after a bus driver made an illegal U-turn that caused a violent collision. The accident happened in Paramus, New Jersey when a group of elementary students and their accompanying teachers and chaperones were on their way to a field trip. Their bus driver missed his exit and pulled into an area that was designated as a turnaround for authorities. In the process of making an illegal U-turn, the bus was hit by a dump truck. 

As a result of the collision, a 10-year-old girl and a teacher were killed. The father of the 10-year-old girl and her twin sister who was injured in the crash, is now pushing for stricter laws that require a background check of all bus drivers. His quest to change the law is centered around the fact that the bus driver’s license had been suspended 14 times. The father hopes that a change to the law may prevent unnecessary tragedies that stem from hiring drivers who have an unstable driving past. 

If people have been the victims of a bus crash, they may wish to hire an attorney to help them work through the legalities of seeking compensation. A legal professional has the experience to gather evidence and prevent it in a way that clearly defines how victims’ lives were altered by one person’s irresponsible decision. 

Source: northjersey.com, “Father of Paramus bus crash victim advocates for stricter background checks on drivers,” Sarah Nolan, Sept. 18, 2018

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