Multiple Illinois Megabus Crashes Raise Bus Carrier Safety Concerns

On behalf of Mark Maritote at R. Mark Maritote, P.C.

Megabus is a popular discount bus carrier operating in several states, including Illinois. Megabus and similar companies offer competitive fares to travelers looking to save money. But, two recent fatal Megabus accidents in Illinois raise questions about whether discount bus companies may be sacrificing safety in order to cut costs.

The first crash, which occurred on August 2, left one dead and at least 42 injured. A double-decker Megabus crashed into a concrete pillar supporting an overpass on Interstate 55. The official cause of the accident is still under investigation, but one passenger reported that the bus driver lost control after one of the vehicle's tires blew out.

In a separate incident that occurred on August 7, a Chicago woman was killed when she was struck by the side mirror of an empty Megabus. The driver had been attempting to make a turn on a downtown street, and was issued a citation for failing to yield to a pedestrian.

Following the first accident, Megabus released a statement, saying that safety remains their number one priority, that their drivers are required to have at least 105 hours of classroom and behind-the-wheel training, and that all of their vehicles are equipped with three-point seatbelts. However, given the seriousness of the two incidents that occurred in Illinois in such a short period of time, it may be that more needs to be done to encourage discount bus carrier safety.

For victims who are injured in a bus accident, or for the families of victims who are killed, a lawsuit can not only provide compensation, it also serves as an incentive for bus companies to devote more attention to safety.

Take a typical example of bus company liability: imagine that a blown tire caused a bus accident. Those injured in the accident file a lawsuit, and it's proven that the tire was worn out and should have been replaced, but it wasn't because the company failed to conduct a proper safety inspection on the vehicle. The company's negligence caused the accident, and thus, it will have to compensate victims for any losses they suffered as a result, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

These types of injury lawsuits fairly compensate victims and financially incentivize bus carriers to put more effort into preventing accidents.

Discount bus carriers are supposed to provide affordable travel — but never at the expense of safety. If you or a loved one has been injured in a bus accident, get the compensation you deserve and do your part to keep bus travel safe: contact an attorney today to discuss your case.