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Mass Transit/Metro Accident Attorneys in Washington

With the rise in popularity of mass transit, more and more people are using trains, buses, and other public transportation to commute and get from point A to point B. Unfortunately, accidents do happen. These cases are distinct from traditional motor vehicle collisions because they involve the common carrier doctrine.

A common carrier has a duty to its passengers to exercise the highest degree of care consistent with the practical operation of its type of transportation and its business as a common carrier. Any failure of a common carrier to exercise such care is negligence

Being involved in a mass transit accident can be an extremely traumatic experience. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed and unsure of what the next steps should be. If this sounds like your situation, reach out to our personal injury attorneys at Perez & Perez Law PLLC. We can provide knowledgeable advice and guidance throughout every step of the process of obtaining compensation for you or your family members.  

We proudly serve and represent clients throughout the State of Washington, including: King County, Snohomish County, Pierce County, Thurston County, Kittitas County, Island County, and Spokane County, Washington.

Common Causes of Mass Transit Accidents  

Mass transit accidents can occur for a variety of reasons. Understanding what caused the accident can help in determining who should be held liable for causing it. Some of the most common causes of accidents involving public transportation include:  

  • Operator negligence. This involves anything from speeding or failing to obey traffic laws, operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or simply not paying attention to the road ahead. Operator negligence also includes falling asleep at the wheel or driving while fatigued as well as any other action taken by an operator that puts passengers in danger.  

  • Defective parts. This could include malfunctioning brakes, steering components like a loose steering wheel that does not work properly in turns and curves, and any other part that malfunctions due to age wear and tear or manufacturing/design defects.  

  • Inadequate maintenance. A lack of regular servicing leads to wear and tear on vehicles over time, which can eventually result in mechanical failure and potentially disastrous consequences if not addressed in a timely manner.  

  • Damage to roads/rails. If they are not identified quickly enough, damage to roads or rails can also contribute to mass transit accidents. Worn-out tracks may cause a derailment, while debris on roads may potentially block visibility. All these and other issues need careful monitoring so they do not become potential hazards when traveling by public transportation systems which depend heavily upon safe routes.   

  • Lack of training. Finally, lack of training is another major contributing factor to mass transit accidents—especially when operators have limited experience or have not been trained properly on how to operate their vehicles safely and efficiently according to local regulations governing public transportation systems (e.g., speed limits or the use of new technology).  

Hold the Responsible Party Accountable 

Who Is Liable for Mass Transit Accidents?  

When mass transit accidents occur, determining liability usually requires an in-depth investigation that involves visits to the accident site and a comprehensive review of the driver log, black box, eyewitness statements, and other types of evidence.  

Liability for a mass transit accident depends on how the accident occurred and what caused it. Generally, the following four parties may be held liable for accidents involving public transportation:  

  • Government entity. In some cases, the government entity or agency responsible for overseeing the mass transit system can be held liable for the accident. This is especially true if there has been negligence on the part of the government entity when it comes to maintaining safety standards or inspecting equipment. For example, if a train crash was caused by faulty brakes that had not been inspected in years, then the government agency could be held liable.  

  • Transit system. The transit system itself—whether it is a bus line or a train company—may also be liable for an accident depending on what caused it. If the accident was caused by human error (such as a driver falling asleep at the wheel) or mechanical failure (such as brake failure), then the transit system may be held accountable for any damages or injuries that resulted from it.  

  • The driver of another vehicle. If another vehicle was involved in the accident—for example, if a car collided with a bus—then that other driver may also be held liable for any damages or injuries caused by their negligence. This could include distracted driving, reckless driving, or any other violation of traffic law that contributed to the accident.  

  • Parts manufacturer. In some cases, a parts manufacturer may also be held accountable if they created faulty parts that contributed to an accident occurring. For example, if defective brakes were installed on a train and they caused an accident, then those who manufactured and supplied those brakes could potentially be found negligent and therefore liable for any damages incurred as a result of their negligence. 

Filing a Claim After a Mass Transit Accident 

Obtaining compensation after a mass transit accident requires you to file a personal injury claim (if you were injured) or a wrongful death lawsuit (if your loved one was killed in the accident): 

  1. Personal injury claim. If you have been injured as a result of a mass transit accident, it is important to file a personal injury claim as soon as possible so that you can receive the compensation you deserve for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other related damages.  

  1. Wrongful death lawsuit. In some cases, an individual may be killed as a result of a mass transit accident. If this has happened to someone you know or love, you need to understand your rights under the law. A wrongful death lawsuit seeks to compensate surviving family members for their financial losses due to their loved one’s death.  

An experienced attorney in your area can explain your state’s laws surrounding mass transit accidents and can help guide you through the process of obtaining compensation.  

Mass Transit/Metro Accident Attorneys in Seattle, Washington  

No one should ever have to suffer through the stress and trauma of being involved in a mass transit accident without proper legal representation. Our mass transit/metro accident attorneys at Perez & Perez Law PLLC fight hard for victims’ rights to ensure that negligent parties are held accountable for their actions and that victims receive fair compensation for any losses they have suffered. Contact our office in Seattle, Washington, today to schedule a case review. 

We proudly serve and represent clients throughout the State of Washington, including: King County, Snohomish County, Pierce County, Thurston County, Kittitas County, Island County, and Spokane County, Washington.