What Do I Do if I’m Injured in a Public Transit Accident?

Are you one of the many Edmontonians that rely on public transit for your commuting? With approximately 256,600 riders (source) using ETS busses and the LRT system for their daily transport, there’s no denying that knowing how to stay safe while riding and what to do if you are involved in an incident resulting in a personal injury as a passenger is essential.

Being injured on public transit as the result of the operator or another motorist isn’t common, making it even more difficult to know what to do when you need help; below, we’ll take a closer look at some of the most important info bites you need to have in mind if you’re injured while riding public transportation. Read on to learn how to protect yourself when it matters most!

What Makes Public Transit Accidents Tricky?

If you regularly ride transit or plan to in the future, you should be aware that one of the most difficult aspects of handling a personal injury claim related to riding the bus or LRT is that it can be significantly more complex to determine what part(ies) are at fault. As you are not the one behind the wheel and have no control over the actions or reactions of other motorists, it is crucial to determine who is involved and which actions led to your injuries. Depending on the variables involved, the at-fault party could be determined to be the bus/LRT driver, a third-party motorist, or, if the passenger is proven to have been behaving recklessly, they may be deemed to be liable for their own injuries.

In the most general of applications, there are typically two kinds of parties that can be held at fault for successful personal injury claims revolving around public transit incidences:

– The transit operator, in which case you will be suing the City of Edmonton and/or

– Another motorist. In this case, your case would be against their insurer, or, in the absence of an active insurance policy, you will sue the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Act (MVAC) Administrator.

Accident victims will need to provide substantial evidence that their injuries were caused by the bus accident, which is commonly obtained via witnesses and surveillance footage from inside the public transport vehicle (obtained by legal counsel through the City).

What to Do FIRST?

If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed having read the above, it’s important to know that you’re not alone, and to remember that there is a possibility of securing a fair settlement if you can prove that you have been unjustly injured from a transit accident. Before we go into how to build your case, it’s crucial to take the following first steps to protect your overall health and safety immediately following an accident:

Seek Medical Attention NOW.

Being involved in any kind of accident is jarring and traumatic. It’s far too easy to get wrapped up in all of the little details that follow such a chaotic event, and to forget to put your health first. If you are involved in any kind of vehicle collision or significant body impact, the number one thing you need to do is get medical help right away. Even if you feel fine, you should never delay medical assessment and treatment following an accident.

Seeing a doctor as soon as possible is one of the best ways to help minimize your long term injuries, receive an accurate diagnosis, and begin the process of documenting any existing issues just in case you develop additional symptoms or discomfort later on. The longer you delay your treatment and evaluation, the more you put yourself at risk both personally and financially, as it can often become difficult to prove a direct correlation for existent injuries that are left undiagnosed following an accident.

Document Your Damages

It’s also important to be aware that the “injuries” resulting from an accident aren’t solely physical maladies. Fair compensation recognizes the overall damage caused to an individual, including lost time, quality of life sufferance, medical expenses, expenses incurred as a direct result of the accident (i.e. seeking alternative transport to numerous medical and specialist appointments), loss of career potential, and more. In addition to seeking medical assistance right away, you need to be diligent about keeping detailed records of any expenses or significant inconveniences you encounter following your accident. If necessary, enlist the help of a trusted friend or family member who will be involved in your recovery journey to help you keep track of appointments, finances, and other details that evolve over time.

Speak to a Legal Team ASAP

Following an accident, there’s no doubt that you’ll be fielding quite a few calls in the initial days that follow, whether it be from concerned friends and family members, your employers, medical personnel, and more. The one team YOU should be seeking out right away is a qualified team of legal experts to represent your best interests.

Contacting a lawyer ASAP is essential to protecting your rights and ensuring you maintain your pursuit of fair compensation as efficiently as possible.

Public Transit Injury Law with James H. Brown and Associates

At James H. Brown and Associates, we’re proud to stand up for the rights of Albertans to fair care and compensation following an accident. We know that personal injuries obtained while riding transit can be profound and life-altering and that navigating Alberta’s healthcare and legal system alone can be overwhelming. Our experienced team knows firsthand what it’s like to be seriously injured, and is proud of our proven record of results for our clients. With over 30 years of industry-leading results behind our team, we offer Albertans a full range of legal services and support, including:

  • A proven team of injury lawyers with an unrivalled record of success.
  • Complete accident investigation services, including accident reconstruction, evidence preservation, analysis, and more.
  • Access to medical and vocational professionals to fully assess your injuries, understand long-term consequences and provide supporting documentation for your case.
  • Strong relationships with community organizations dedicated to rehabilitation and recovery.
  • And much more!

You Don’t Have to Face This Alone

If you’ve been involved in a public transit accident and find yourself facing pain and suffering, we’re here to help!

Contact us today to book a free, no-obligation consultation with James H. Brown and Associates’ injury lawyers.

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