About a year ago, 15 people were killed in a commercial bus that was traveling from Connecticut to New York City. A few months later, 30 bus passengers were injured in upstate New York in an accident that killed a truck driver. According to Governor Andrew Cuomo, these New York bus accidents are just two examples of why it's necessary to increase the amount of commercial bus inspections conducted by the Department of Transportation. To that end, Cuomo and the New York State Legislature recently approved $1 million in the state budget to create a program that will allow the DOT to conduct more safety bus inspections.
"This increased enforcement and manpower will enhance the states' ability to crack down on bus companies that may be putting passengers at risk," Cuomo said in an interview with The Associated Press.
Under the new program, buses - including commercial bus lines and school buses - will be inspected several times each year. And the more safety problems that the DOT finds with a particular bus company, the more inspections that company will undergo. In addition, the program will increase the number of unannounced inspections that the Department of Transportation can conduct.
Bus Safety: There's an App for That
In order to keep the public informed about which commercial bus companies are maintaining safety standards, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently launched an application for iPads and iPhones that includes the safety record of bus companies. The SaferBus app can be downloaded on iTunes or at www.fmcsa.dot.gov/saferbus.
Although this information can help consumers make informed decisions about how they travel, accidents still happen. If you've been injured in a bus-related accident, it's important to find out what your rights are. An experienced personal injury attorney can advise you of what action you can take, and whether you can collect compensation for your injuries.