Even if you haven't been on a bus lately, you can safely make this observation: Few to none have passenger seat belts. You might assume that the absence of this safety feature means that bus accidents are either so rare or so harmless to passengers that they simply aren't necessary. But bus accidents can and do happen, and unfortunately, they are quite capable of injuring people.
A bus traveling through Lonaconing, Maryland, became involved in a truck accident last week. The bus, which belongs to a nonprofit organization that serves people with developmental disabilities, was traveling on state Route 36 when the crash happened. A garbage truck was heading in the direction of the bus on the same road when it crossed the double yellow line and went directly into the path of the bus. The resulting collision ripped open the bus on the driver's side, injuring the driver and two passengers. All three, along with the driver of the truck, were taken to hospitals for treatment of their injuries.
The accident is still under investigation and it's not clear how fast the two vehicles were traveling at the time. But the extensive damage to the bus and the truck, which also had to be towed from the crash scene, demonstrates the force of a truck and the damage it can cause.
It's also not clear why the garbage truck driver crossed over into opposing traffic. But he or the truck company is likely to be held liable for the accident and the injuries to the bus's driver and passengers. Even though bus accidents like this are relatively rare, when they do occur, passengers have the right to expect some form of compensation if they're injured.
Source: Cumberland Times-News, "Update: 4 injured in bus-truck accident," June 28, 2012