School Bus Accident
School bus accidents are often more complicated than car accidents. This is because like public bus accidents, the legal doctrine called “Sovereign Immunity” applies in cases involving a public school bus.
Florida law provides that school buses used for the transportation of pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade students, purchased new after December 31, 2000, must be equipped with a sufficient number of safety belts or another restraint system approved by the Federal Government to secure each student.
Regular transportation is provided by Florida as “to and from school or school-related activities that are part of a scheduled series or sequence of events to the same location. ”
District school boards must regard maximum safety and adequate protection of health for passengers in routing buses, appointing drivers, and providing and operating equipment. Florida law requires district school boards to designate and adopt a specific plan for adequate examination, maintenance, and repair of transportation equipment.
In sharing the roads with school buses, it is important to know how the law affects you. When approaching any school bus displaying a stop sign, the driver of a vehicle must come to a full stop while the bus is stopped, and the driver is not to pass until the sign has been withdrawn. A driver who violates this law commits a moving violation, and is subject to punishment.
Motor vehicles other than school buses may be used for:
For physically handicapped or isolated students, through written or oral contract or agreement
A part of a comprehensive contract for a specialized educational program between a district school board and a service provider who provides instruction, transportation, and other services
Provided through a public transit system
For trips to and from school sites or agricultural educational site or for trips to and from agricultural education-related
Drivers of authorized vehicles transporting students must maintain a valid driver’s license and must comply with the requirements of the school district’s locally adopted safe driver plan, which includes review of driving records for disqualifying violations.
There are some occasions, which the school board may authorize to transport students in a privately owned motor vehicle. It is important to know that district school board employees who provide approved transportation in privately owned vehicles are acting within the scope of their employment. Parents or other responsible adults who provide approved transportation in privately owned vehicles have the same exposure to, and protections from, risks of personal liability as do district school board employees acting within the scope of their employment.
How can a Miami School Bus Accident Attorney help you?
The Perez-Gurri Law Firm will handle all aspects of your injury case. We will explain the law to you and how it affects your case. You should consult with an attorney who can advise you of your rights and the potential value of your damages. It is very likely that an insurance company adjuster or investigator will attempt to contact you and obtain your statement before you have had an opportunity to speak with an attorney. It is always recommended that you speak to an attorney before you speak with a representative from an insurance company.
What to do after a School Bus Accident:
Take photographs of all vehicles involved
Report Accident to the Police
Take photographs of all visible injuries
Do not speak to anyone but your attorney
Obtain the name and phone number of all witnesses
Obtain immediate medical attention
What you may be entitled to receive, including but not limited to:
-Payment of medical bills
-Payment of lost wages
-Payment of lost services
-Payment for loss of earning capacity
-Payment for physical pain and suffering
-Payment for emotional pain and suffering