Your Rights in Public Transportation Accidents
Posted on behalf of Henness & Haight on Apr 09, 2015 in Car Accident News
About 180,000 people use mass transit on any given day in Las Vegas. With so many people relying up on these services to get to work, school, entertainment, shopping, healthcare and other commitments, it's no surprise that many are injured in accidents. When you are involved in a public transit accident, it is vital to know your rights so that you can get back on the road to recovery.
Common Carriers in Public Transportation
Mass and public transit providers are known as common carriers. These include any business or person who is licensed to transport passengers for a fee. These services are carefully regulated by both state and federal laws. Some common carriers include (but are not limited to):
Duty of Care
As with any service, common carriers have a basic assumed duty of care to their customers. This duty of care involves the carrier taking reasonable precautions to keep their patrons safe and uninjured. Such precautions can include:
· Keeping exits and entryways safe, clear of obstructions and well lit
· Providing security to protect passengers where needed
· Ensuring that operators, drivers and pilots are well-qualified and trained
· Keeping vehicles in good working order with necessary safety features present and operational.
When a carrier fails to engage this duty of care, liability issues result.
When a passenger suffers an injury such as whiplash, cuts, bruises, scrapes, broken bones, back injuries, chemical exposure, concussion and head injuries or even victimization by a criminal or death, they or their relatives may be entitled to compensation.
No carrier can make sure that every passenger is 100% safe while traveling. However, it is required for these service providers to take all reasonable precautions to be sure that injury or victimization by criminal acts does not occur. To recover damages, you must be able to prove negligence and failure to mitigate risk on the part of the agency in question.
Tort Claims Act
The Tort Claims Act regulates action against state and federal government agencies that provide public transportation. Such agencies can include city buses, subways, school district buses, government-managed airports and the like.
Filing a claim against one of these agencies requires specialized knowledge of the intricacies of the law and the paperwork that must be filed. You should never attempt a Tort Claims Act filing on your own.
Statute of Limitations
Every state has its own statute of limitations for personal injury; Nevada's is two years. You must file within this statute in order to recover damages. Where other personal injury claims can have a statute of limitations of up to two years, in public transportation sectors you can have as little as a month to act. Therefore, you need to contact an attorney as quickly as possible if you have been injured.
What to Do After a Public Transportation Accident
If you are involved in a public transportation accident, you should immediately contact a qualified personal injury attorney. Only an injury lawyer will be able to navigate the murky waters of public transportation law. Never try to file a claim on your own.
If you have been involved in a public transportation accident and need representation, give us a call today for a free consult.