What are your rights if injured while riding public transportation? - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Wednesday, 14 February 2018

What are your rights if injured while riding public transportation?

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The size of the province can make it seem as though getting around Ontario should be difficult, but the existence of public transportation, particularly in Toronto and other large cities, helps commuters and visitors in their daily travels. Using public transportation is not without its risks. One of the companies providing public transportation in Ontario reported that its buses were involved in 897 crashes during a recent three-year period. It labelled more than 46 percent of them as being preventable had the drivers taken appropriate measures to avoid them. Users of public transportation should know their rights if they are injured in a crash.

How public transportation accidents cause injuries

A crash involving a bus, train or other form of public transportation can cause serious injuries to riders using the public transit, but it can also cause injuries to the occupants of other vehicles, pedestrians and bicycle riders. Pedestrians seem to be particularly vulnerable to being hit by trains and buses operated by public transportation systems.

Claims for statutory accident benefits

Drivers and passengers injured in a crash with a train, bus or other vehicle operated as part of public transportation could file a claim for statutory accident benefits under the Ontario Insurance Act. Benefits include the following:

  • Expenses related to medical care, physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Income replacement as compensation for wages lost from being unable to work due to the injuries suffered in the accident
  • In-home services to assist with grooming, dressing, showering and bathing, and other personal needs that you cannot perform on your own due to the serious injuries suffered in the collision

If you are injured in a public transportation accident, you could also have the right to sue for compensation.

Protecting your right to sue for damages

Whether you are injured in a collision with a form of public transportation or while riding as a passenger on a bus or train on your way to work, there are a few things you should do in order to protect your right to sue the provider of the public transportation. If you are unable to do the following, try to get a friend or someone else at the scene to do them for you:

  • Notify the driver or other employee that you have suffered an injury. This might seem obvious in situations involving a vehicle crash, but if a sudden stop or other movement of the mode of public transit you are riding causes you to fall, you must notify someone immediately of the incident.
  • Seek medical attention right away. If your injuries are serious enough, ask someone to call for an ambulance. When you believe your injuries do not warrant calling an ambulance, you should go to hospital or to a doctor’s office to be examined. Some injuries, such as head injuries, might not initially appear to be serious, but they can worsen in the hours following the injury.
  • Get the name and contact information for all employees, including drivers and operators, who are present at the time of the accident. If the accident happened on a bus, get the number of the vehicle.
  • If there are witnesses, get their names and contact information.

You only have a limited amount of time to make a claim for compensation when injured in a public transportation accident. It is essential that you contact a personal injury lawyer immediately after the accident to find out what needs to be done next.

Ontario public transportation injury lawyers

The personal injury lawyers at Diamond and Diamond have years of experience successfully handling claims for compensation on behalf of victims of public transportation accidents. Call their 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit their website to speak to someone now. They offer free consultations and case evaluations to injured victims throughout Ontario.

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