Public Transit Motor Vehicle Accidents
Recent government investment in public transit has resulted in prominent coverage in the media, and as congestion grows in Southern Ontario, transit is becoming an increasingly common way for people to travel, particularly in cities.
Transit offers many advantages to the public, but given that most if not all public transit vehicles are not equipped with seatbelts, when such a vehicle is involved in a collision, injuries and even fatalities can unfortunately be the result.
What is a Public Transit Motor Vehicle Accident?
If you sustain injuries in a public transit vehicle, it is important to know that under the law of the Province of Ontario, to be considered a motor vehicle accident, an actual collision needs to have occurred. Sometimes, transit drivers make sudden stops, or to swerve to avoid a collision which due to falls and the lack of restraints for passengers, can result in injuries from soft-tissue neck and back problems, to fractures and head injuries, to spinal injuries amongst others.
However, these types of “near-misses”, and even crashes that don’t involve another vehicle no longer technically constitute motor vehicle accidents under the Ontario Insurance Act. You can, however, often make other claims arising from these type of accidents.
Bringing a Claim
When a public transit vehicle is involved in a collision with another vehicle, injured passengers may be eligible to file a claim for their injuries against the municipality that owns the vehicle, the driver of the public transit vehicle and/or the driver of the other vehicle, depending upon the facts. These motor vehicle accident personal injury claims typically need to be issued at court within two years of the date of the accident, however other timelines do apply so you should consult with a lawyer immediately after the accident.
If the injured passenger is insured under an automobile insurance policy, they can file a claim for Statutory Accident Benefits (SABS) with their own insurance company. All Ontario residents with car insurance are eligible for these benefits, regardless of fault for the accident. These benefits can include coverage for medical treatment and lost income. If you are not covered under your own automobile insurance policy, you can still apply for coverage under the insurance that covers the public transit vehicle, or the other vehicle involved in the accident.
Rely on the Advice of a Car Accident Personal Injury Lawyer
If you’ve been involved in a traffic accident with a public transit vehicle, it is important that you seek legal advice from experts in motor vehicle accident law, as it specifically relates to public transit vehicles.
The injuries and expenses that passengers involved in public transit accident can be severe and life-changing, so it is important that you get professional advice about the benefits and compensation that you may be entitled to. Insurance companies often rely upon strict and complicated deadlines.
It is important that you consult with a lawyer who knows and understands the latest changes to the law of car accident insurance and what they mean to victims of accidents on public transit.
You can rely on the personal injury lawyers at Mackesy Smye to represent you and made sure that you receive fair compensation for your injuries and losses.
Click the button below and book your free initial consultation to review the details of your public transit accident and learn how we can help with your case.