The Cassidy Law Firm Blog

Friday, February 8, 2019

School Bus Crash in New Jersey Traps Children Under Power Lines

What are the most common causes of school bus accidents?

Recently, a school bus in New Jersey ran off the road and hit a utility pole, leaving the driver and children trapped under power lines.  Authorities report that the bus was carrying eight students between the ages of eight and 11 when it crashed in East Brunswick.  The driver and children aboard waited until the utility company shut down the power lines so that the children could exit safely.  Fortunately, no injuries were reported despite the harrowing ordeal. The cause of the accident is still being investigated.  So far, it has been reported that the crash occurred on a hard to navigate road and the driver was fairly new to the route. 

Causes of Bus Crashes 

School buses are considered one of the safest vehicles on the road. Statistically, your child has a far greater chance of being injured in a car accident than a bus accident.  However, as this New Jersey bus accident demonstrates, bus accidents can still occur.  Each year, between four and six school age children will die in school bus accidents, while roughly 17,000 children are injured in school bus related accidents. 
For parents, a school bus accident is a nightmare situation.  The causes of bus accidents are similar to the causes of other vehicular accidents.  Some of the top causes of bus crashes include:

  • Driver distraction
  • Driver negligence 
  • Poor road conditions 
  • Equipment defects 
  • Stability issues 
  •  Structural problems with the bus
  • Driver intoxication 
  • Driver inexperience 

Parents should take solace in the relative rarity of school bus accidents, but should nonetheless take precautions to prevent their children from suffering an injury.  In addition to school bus crashes, thousands of children are injured while entering or exiting the bus, or waiting at the bus stop.  Instruct your child to enter the bus only once it has come to a complete stop.  Wait for the bus in a safe location away from traffic.  Once on the bus, sit still and wear a seatbelt, if provided. Do not distract the driver and keep the aisle clear.  Lastly, upon exiting the bus, take caution to ensure your backpack straps do not get caught in the door. Use the handrail and walk at least ten feet in front of the bus before crossing the street.  Contact a personal injury lawyer should your child experience any sort of injury while riding the school bus.

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