Bus crashes can lead to serious and debilitating injuries and death in some cases. Poor management is often cited as a leading cause in some horrific bus injuries. Although bus companies like any other business are entitled to make money, compromising on safety costs is usually the easiest way to cut expenses and add to profits. When a business makes profit-driven decisions that jeopardizes safety and results in accidents and injured passengers, the injured parties and their families need to stand up to the bus company and hire a law firm to investigate the accident and to hold the company responsible for its actions.
In the recent BoltBus crash on Interstate 295 in New Jersey, the Bus Safety Lawyers at Ostroff Injury Law are already at work in determining why the bus tire blew, causing a fully loaded passenger bus to veer out of control, terrorizing the passengers, and ending up in a ditch.
Is BoltBus showing signs of a bus company in distress?
BoltBus is an intracity and intercity bus service serving the northeast and northwest United States and British Columbia, Canada. Its northeast US operations are a joint venture between Greyhound Lines and Peter Pan Bus Lines, and its Pacific Northwest operations are wholly owned by Greyhound Lines. Despite the complex business model and ownership of BoltBus by elite transportation companies, BoltBus operates as a budget bus company that charges ultra-low fares–as low as $1–depending on demand for seats.
Bus companies are part of an industry with a troubled safety record. A 2011 National Transportation Safety Board report indicated that bus companies offering curbside pickup, such as BoltBus, were up to seven times more likely to be involved in bus accidents with passenger injuries. The report also noted significant barriers to effective inspections and regulation of these motorcoach carriers.
The April 2013 BoltBus Accident
The April BoltBus accident concerned a tour bus owned by BoltBus with about 50 passengers that was traveling from Philadelphia to New York. While enroute on I-295 in Mercer County, New Jersey, the bus suddenly veered through a guardrail and crashed, sending 14 people to area hospitals.
The police investigation confirmed that a blown-out tire caused the BoltBus driver to lose control, sending the bus crashing through the guardrail and down a steep embankment. The circumstances of the accident has led to many more questions:
- Why was the bus traveling with a dangerous tire?
- How does BoltBus handle and conduct its bus safety inspections?
- Could a better trained driver have reacted differently to the blowout and maintained control of the vehicle?
- If bus crashes like this reportedly “minor” accident sends over a quarter of its passengers to the emergency room, what safety measures does BoltBus have to protect its passengers when more serious accidents occur?
Undoubtedly, more questions may arise as the investigation continues.
Bus Safety Lawyers are Monitoring the Situation
BoltBus’ corporate image as a scrappy, consumer-friendly bus firm is belied by its backing by Greyhound, the nation’s largest bus company. The New Jersey BoltBus accident, following so soon after a fatal Delaware bus crash involving BoltBus last October, has brought the legal team at Bus Safety Lawyers to high alert.
“All too often, bus companies are tempted to skimp on safety in order to increase profits,” said Pennsylvania attorney Jon Ostroff, one of the founders of Bus Safety Lawyers. “Discount bus carriers set their fares low, so they can win the price war with other carriers. They have to cut costs somewhere, and safety measures are often where they start, or as I often say, where they “cheat.” Increasing company profits usually translates into increasing the risks to their passengers.”
Though it may be premature to conclude that BoltBus is ignoring safety standards and placing its passengers at undue risk, we are investigating this issue. We urge any passenger who has been injured in a BoltBus traffic accident to call us at (888) 653-3636 to let us know what you experienced. In return, we will give you a free case evaluation—even if you wish to find a different lawyer to represent you.
Get the Bus Safety Lawyers on your side. You don’t pay until the bus company pays you.