July 6, 2023

How Do I Begin a School Bus or Public Carrier Accident?

Learn how to begin a school bus or public carrier accident personal injury or wrongful death case

How Do I Begin a School Bus or Public Carrier Accident?

How Do I Begin a School Bus or Public Carrier Accident?

You are here for legal advice about your personal injury or wrongful death case. Mike Burman at Burman Law offers a free consultation to answer your questions. During your consultation - if you are comfortable - Mike will cover these six key steps with you:

  • Preserve important physical evidence so nothing critical is lost
  • Interview witnesses and law enforcement
  • Take custody of photographs and video
  • Impound or take custody of the school bus or public carrier
  • Provide you with a free case evaluation so you understand what the case is about
  • Provide you with a plan of action so you understand how the case will be handled

Mike is a death and injury lawyer with 25+ years of experience helping hundreds of accident victims against at-fault commercial operators and careless drivers of all types. Other lawyers often call Mike for advice with their personal injury lawsuits and wrongful death lawsuits. Once you begin your free case evaluation with Mike, you will know the legal advice is coming from an experienced attorney.

There is never any pressure. Your consultation and attorney-client relationship are strictly confidential. Mike will provide legal advice and answer all your questions. and explain traffic laws, so you know what is important about your case. If you are dealing with an insurance company adjuster, Mike will give you advice based on years of experience. Mike and the staff at Burman Law understand that starting a personal injury case or wrongful death case can be overwhelming and intimidating. To help you, the friendly legal team at Burman Law average over 10 years of paralegal experience with personal injury claims and wrongful death claims. Your free access to the Burman Law Client Portal means you stay informed. You can contact us through the portal, by phone, by text, or by email. If you contact us on a workday, we almost always can respond to you that day.

You can schedule a consultation with Mike by clicking:

For the legal process to work, several steps in a bus accident claim must be addressed quickly, especially the preservation of evidence and the location of witnesses against the at-fault party. The police accident report needs to be checked for accuracy. Medical treatment from specialized medical professionals familiar with injuries from common carriers (public entities or private entities) that are used to transport people such as school buses, private buses, or public transportation carriers. Medical bills and lost wages should be submitted to insurance for payment.

Beginning a case may help prevent other school bus or public carrier accidents from occurring. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), in 2020, from different bus companies nationwide, there were 54 fatalities from school bus crashes. This number was down approximately 50% than it was the previous year in 2019. This was due to there being fewer school bus and public transportation bus trips in 2020 because of the Covid-19 pandemic. There are government entities, such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a government agency of the U.S. federal government, that defines a school bus-related crash as being “any crash in which a vehicle, regardless of body design, used as a school bus is directly or indirectly involved. This includes incidents involving school children getting in or out of a vehicle. From 2011 to 2020, about 70% of the deaths in school bus-related crashes were occupants of vehicles other than the school bus, and 16% were pedestrians. About 5% were school bus passengers, 5% were school bus drivers, and 3% were pedal cyclists.” Bus accident cases, as well as most car accidents, are typically caused by driver negligence. If you decide we will be your auto accident attorney, our legal team will help you:

  • plan for medical expenses not paid by insurance
  • plan for lost income and time off from work
  • calendar the statute of limitations under state law so you do not miss any time limits
  • answer all the FAQs, as well as the questions unique to your case
  • meet with surviving family members and explain the legal process
  • fill out the necessary paperwork for your insurance policy or insurance claim
  • provide advice on your property damage claim for automobile repairs or total loss or the replacement value
  • lay the foundation for you to receive a fair settlement amount without the expense and delay of a lawsuit


We handle every type of bus or public carrier crash or motor vehicle accident where the at-fault driver has failed to meet the duty of care. We handle accidents and cases involving punitive damages and non-economic damages for pain and suffering.  We handle cases against school districts, municipalities and tour bus operators.  Our legal team is also experienced in medical malpractice cases that sometimes arise. We handle or assist with probate matters involving a decedent in a wrongful death tort lawsuit. We handle loss of consortium cases for the loss of a spouse or minor child. Our experience ranges from semi-truck accidents to farm vehicles to seat belts. Our case values range from tens of thousands of dollars to millions of dollars. We can practice in all federal or state courts throughout Kentucky and Tennessee.  Burman Law is an accident attorney with offices in Hopkinsville, Kentucky and Clarksville, Tennessee to better serve you.


Every driver has a duty to exercise for the safety of other persons using the highway. We investigate and prove fault by motorists who:

  • Fail to maintain a safe distance
  • Fail to slow to a safe speed or continually use excessive speed
  • Fail to allow time for safe clearance
  • Fail to obey traffic signals (i.e., red lights or stop signs)
  • Fail to keep a proper lookout for pedestrian traffic
  • Fail to pay attention, especially at night or during inclement weather
  • Fail to perceive a dangerous condition or immediate hazard
  • Fail to drive free of impairment by drugs or alcohol
  • Fail to stop operating a cell phone while operating a bus or public carrier bus


Personal injury and wrongful death cases require quick attention from an experienced personal injury law firm. Mike Burman is a personal injury attorney with the staff and financial resources needed to take on any insurance company.  As your accident lawyer, Mike Burman and his law firm will work quickly to:

  • Understand the mechanism of injury causing pain and suffering or death
  • Look for severe injuries that are often hard to find, such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries or labral tears in the hip
  • Preserve evidence that could be washed away, destroyed, or lost
  • Study traffic patterns and traffic
  • Search for CCTv video/audio, ring doorbell cameras, police videos, and business cameras
  • Locate and interview witnesses
  • Engage experts in accident reconstruction to uncover critical facts
  • Download the “black box” speed and distance computer on the “at-fault” vehicle
  • Impound the at-fault vehicle and preserve the vehicle

In every personal injury case, we investigate and preserve evidence. We locate and contact all available witnesses. We notify all necessary parties and insurance companies, notify all lienholders, gather and protect evidence and damages,  prepare a settlement demand, negotiate an accident settlement, resolve liens, and distribute a fair settlement to you. Automobile injury and death cases require quick attention from an experienced personal injury law firm. Mike Burman is a personal injury attorney with the staff and financial resources needed to take on any insurance company.  As your school bus accident lawyer, Mike Burman and his law firm will work quickly to answer all your questions and learn about your injuries-including those hard-to-find injuries that are oftentimes overlooked, such as brain injuries or labral tears in the hip.

Once evidence from the scene is secure, we use information technologies to transform this evidence into a visual representation of your accident to prove the harms and losses behind your serious injuries. Our in-house media service prepares professional digital charts, blowups, and videos while keeping costs under control. Our goal is to communicate your case so that anyone can “be sure” what happened and “understand” what should be done to right the wrong done to you. We work to provide the insurance adjuster with a thorough evaluation of your case so you achieve a full and fair out-of-court settlement.  But if you must file suit, Burman Law will help prepare your case for trial.  At trial, we will visualize your case to the jury, so the jury understands exactly what happened to you, and how your life changed. In this way, the jury has the power to come back with a verdict to help right the wrong done to you.


Insurance companies and insurance adjusters use several tactics to deny claims and pay less than the value of the claim.  Some of the most common we see are:

  • Blaming accident victims for their own injuries
  • Reducing the value of the case by misinterpreting medical records
  • Denying the severe injuries are related to the crash
  • Making low settlement offers for pre-existing or age-related factors
  • Delaying claims as long as possible until you must take a low settlement offer
  • Making lowball settlement offers to reduce the amount you think is reasonable
  • Telling injury victims they do not need to hire a lawyer


We are paid a percentage of the money recovered in your case.  Many personal injury lawyers now charge a fee of 40% to begin your case.  Our fee has been one-third for more than twenty-five plus years.  We do not spend time or money on expensive television ads, and we pass that savings on to you.  There are no hidden disclaimers.  We are transparent at all times.

With our free consultation and case evaluation services, you can confidentially discuss your case with me, Mike Burman, at no charge.  Mike will help you understand your rights and give you a plan of action.  There is never any pressure.  We put all fees and case expenses in writing.  We will set you up with access to a free client portal so you can post anything you want 24/7/365.  We respond to portal messages by the next business day, or sooner.   And you can always contact Mike on his personal cell phone number which he will give you when you hire him to be your bus accident attorney.  Burman Law staff average ten years of experience.  Mike has 25+ years of experience in personal injury and wrongful death cases involving accidents in Kentucky and Tennessee.

We would be honored to help you or your loved ones. You can schedule a consultation with Mike by clicking:



§ 281A.205. Operation of school bus while using cellular telephone prohibited - Exceptions

(1) As used in this section, "cellular telephone" means a cellular, analog, wireless, or digital telephone.

(2) A person shall not operate a school bus, as defined in KRS 281A.010, on any highway while using a cellular telephone while the bus is in motion and transporting one (1) or more children, except for communications made to and from a central dispatch, school transportation department, or its equivalent when the bus is not equipped with a functioning two (2) way radio.

(3) Notwithstanding subsection (2) of this section, a person operating a school bus shall be allowed to use a cellular telephone in the event of a bona fide emergency.

KY Rev. Stat. 281A.205 Operation of school bus while using cellular telephone prohibited - Exceptions (Kentucky Revised Statutes (2022 Edition))


(a) A school bus shall at no time transport more pupils than the manufacturer's rated capacity for the bus, allowing no less than thirteen linear inches (13") of seat space for each pupil. The commissioner of education may, under rules and regulations prepared by the commissioner and approved by the state board of education, issue permits to a local board of education allowing the number of pupils transported on a school bus to exceed the limit prescribed in this subsection (a), up to, but not to exceed, twenty percent (20%) of the manufacturer's rated capacity. In no event shall a permit be issued authorizing the loading of a school bus beyond the limits of safety.

(b) A school bus transporting pupils to and from school or on school-sponsored activity trips shall not exceed posted speed limits or a maximum speed of thirty-five miles per hour (35 mph) on unpaved roadways.

Tenn. Code 49-6-2110 Safe operation of buses (Tennessee Code (2022 Edition))

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