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Mass Transit Accidents – An Overview

City BusMany residents of the greater Wilmington areas rely on mass transit to get to and from work, social activities and to conduct most of the other business of their lives. For many, a primary consideration is the sense of enhanced safety—that they don’t have to incur the risks of taking an automobile on the busy roads in the area. Unfortunately, though, far too many people suffer needless injury on commuter trains, buses and other types of mass transit.

The Common Causes of Mass Transit Accidents

Far and away, most injuries suffered on buses, light rails, subways and commuter trains result from collisions with other objects, including automobiles, guardrails and bridge abutments. These collisions may cause passengers to be thrown to the floor, or even from the car or bus. The accidents are often the result of operator error or negligence, such as speeding, but may also stem from dangerous or defective vehicle components, from poorly maintained tracks or roadways, or from other negligence by owners or operators.

In the Wilmington-Philadelphia area, weather can often contribute to unsafe conditions on mass transit. Patrons can slip on icy or wet steps or floors, and bus operators may experience more difficulty controlling or stopping a vehicle.

The Responsibility of Mass Transit Operators

Buses, trains and light rails are generally referred to as “common carriers,” and have specific duties under law, including:

  • Reasonable care in hiring people who are qualified to operate the bus, train or other vehicle
  • Routine maintenance of vehicles, engines and other parts
  • Regular monitoring to determine any design flaws
  • Ensuring that access and exit points are safe, with appropriate lighting and free from obstructions
  • Providing security, if necessary, to ensure safety of passengers

Contact the Law Office of Michael J. Hood

At the law office of Michael J. Hood, in Wilmington, we bring more than 30 years of experience to personal injury victims in Delaware. For a free initial consultation, contact us online or call our office at 302-777-1000 for an appointment.

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