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The sorry state of America’s bus systems

On Behalf of | Jun 19, 2019 | Commercial Vehicle Accidents

Every motor vehicle accident in Louisiana is a bad one. Even if it is just a minor scrape or a fender bender, it creates an inconvenience for the parties involved and may decrease the value of the car. Of all the many accidents drivers fear, however, commercial vehicle accidents stand at the top of the list.

This is because commercial vehicles are usually larger, such as trucks and buses. This makes it easier for them to cause more damage. They also travel longer distances, which can lead to bored or sleepy drivers at the wheel.

Private bus transportation

In 2016, CNN reported on the lawsuits related to a 2013 Greyhound accident. Passengers report that the bus fish-tailed for miles and one man said he saw the driver doze off at the wheel. Another driver on the road reported seeing the bus swerving and feared that the driver was going to kill someone.

That is exactly what happened. When the bus collided with a tractor-trailer, one woman died and dozens of other passengers were hurt. Some do not recall the moment of impact, but woke up with injuries and resulting disabilities that remind them of what happened nonetheless.

While the driver denies falling asleep at the wheel, CNN revealed that Greyhound failed to enforce its G-40 safety rule. The rule required drivers to stop every 150 miles, walk around and inspect the vehicle. This was intended to keep drivers moving and prevent them from falling asleep.

The driver travelled for 178 miles before the crash occurred. Many people speculate that if she had stopped at the 150-mile point, it may not have happened at all. An attorney representing 22 of the passengers on the bus claimed he would never allow a loved one to ride on Greyhound.

Public bus transportation

CNN notes that private bus companies are not the only ones becoming less attractive to riders. Public transit companies all across America are also struggling to attract passengers. In these instances, slow commute rather than safety is the issue.

Bus ridership keeps traffic congestion down, so cities stubbornly continue to invest in bus-only lanes, smaller buses and better routes. Whether or not this helps to revive the sorry state of bus ridership figures in America remains to be determined.