Riding the bus should be a relatively uneventful experience. However, bus accidents involving Macon-Bibb Transit buses sometimes occur, and they are incredibly dangerous.
Since the local government operates Macon-Bib County Transit Authority (MTA), the government might be liable for your injuries. You can also sue private individuals, like the bus driver who caused the accident. Damages in bus accidents can be quite considerable, with compensatory damages for financial losses and painful experiences. You should file your claims as soon as possible after the accident. When suing a government entity like the MTA, you must submit a notice of your claim to the government long before the statute of limitations expires. You should speak to a lawyer because they can help assess your damages, gather evidence, and abide by legal rules and procedures, including submitting notice.
Arrange a free review of your case with our Macon-Bibb Transit accident and injury lawyers by calling Howe Law at (844) 876-4357.
Liability for Injuries and Accidents on Macon-Bibb Transit
Although we often want to blame the bus driver – which is certainly a possibility – there might be other liable parties to consider. Other drivers on the road might have somehow contributed to the accident. You can also hold the government accountable since the county government operates the MTA.
The bus driver is often the primary defendant in bus accident cases because their negligence is the direct cause of the crash. Distractions like cell phones, traffic violations, or even drunk driving are all possible examples of bus driver negligence. It is also possible that other drivers contributed to the crash. If a vehicle with broken taillights stopped short in front of the speeding bus and caused the bus to swerve into other vehicles, both drivers might be liable for the crash.
Macon-Bibb Transit is a government entity operated by the county, so you can sue the government for your accident. Suing the government is rarely an easy feat to accomplish, but it is not impossible. Municipalities must waive their immunity from liability to be sued. According to O.C.G.A. § 36-92-2(a), the local government’s sovereign immunity is waived for certain vehicle accidents, including public transit buses.
Potential Damages in Macon-Bibb Transit Accidents
Bus accidents are commonly associated with serious injuries and high damages. The extent of your damages may depend on whether you were a passenger on the bus, another driver, or a pedestrian. Our Macon-Bibb Transit accident and injury attorneys can help you calculate your compensatory damages, including economic and non-economic losses and injuries. Punitive damages are unavailable if you are suing a government entity, such as the county or state.
Economic losses related to bus accidents may be significant. Medical bills for injuries can be astronomical, especially for those without health insurance. Even with health insurance, you might still have to pay high deductibles. You can also claim the value of lost income if you were so badly hurt you could not return to work. If you were driving another vehicle, you can claim the costs to repair or replace it after the crash.
Non-economic injuries are more subjective and often unrelated to money. Your emotional and physical pain and suffering should be taken into consideration. Not only are your injuries likely very painful, but many accident survivors feel immense trauma during the weeks, months, or even years after a severe crash.
Under O.C.G.A. § 36-92-2, local governments waive their sovereign immunity in claims for the negligent use of certain motor vehicles (e.g., public buses) up to specific limits. For accidents occurring on or after January 1, 2008, the limit is $500,000 for bodily injuries or death of any one person or an aggregate amount of $700,000 for multiple people. The government may also be liable for up to $50,000 for property damage for any single accident.
When to File Your Lawsuit for an Accident with Macon-Bibb Transit
Although you should take some time to rest and recover after your accident, you must remember that filing a lawsuit involves strict time constraints. The ordinary statute of limitations in Georgia is only 2 years, according to O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33. However, if you are bring a case against the government for an MTA bus accident, you must follow additional, stricter deadlines.
Suppose you sue a local government entity like the county. In that case, you must filing a notice of the claim with the appropriate government entity. Under O.C.G.A. § 36-33-5(b), you have 6 months from the accident to file the notice. This is an extremely tight deadline, and it is important that you speak to a lawyer about your situation as soon as possible.
If you want to sue the state, there is a different deadline. Under O.C.G.A. § 50-21-26(a)(1), you must serve the appropriate state government authority with a notice regarding your claims within 12 months after the crash. You should talk to your attorney about where and how your accident happened to determine if the state government should be implicated.
Why You Should Speak to a Lawyer About Your Injuries from an Accident with Macon-Bibb Transit
One major advantage your lawyer can provide is helping you assess your damages. Most injured victims think of the big damages like medical bills or the cost of a totaled car. However, numerous other damages might be overlooked. Did you have to travel for medical care? Did you take time off work, even just a few days? Maybe you had to hire a costly babysitter for your kids while in the hospital. Your attorney can help identify and evaluate all your damages to maximize your potential compensation.
Your attorney can also help you navigate the complex filing and notice process. Suing a private individual is already complicated, but suing the government is even more challenging. A lawyer can help you determine which government entities are implicated in your case and how to file your claims and serve notice.
Call Our Macon-Bibb Transit Injury and Accident Attorneys for Assistance
Schedule a free evaluation of your case with our Macon-Bibb Transit accident and injury lawyers by calling Howe Law at (844) 876-4357.