Multiple Injuries in Pasco County School Bus Crash
Several middle and high school students were among the victims when a passenger car slammed head-on into a school bus.
The wreck occurred near the intersection of Kitten Trail and Oakwood Lane. For unknown reasons, a passenger car driver drifted into oncoming traffic and smashed into an oncoming school bus. The bus contained students on their way to classes at Hudson Middle School and High School. Emergency responders had to use the Jaws of Life to free the passenger car driver before they rushed him to a nearby hospital. Four people on the school bus, including three students, were injured as well.
None of the names were released.
Concealed Injuries in Car Crash Cases
In the wake of a serious crash, many people do not “feel” injured. Typically, adrenaline from the accident masks the pain, at least for a while. Yet as outlined below, car crash injuries normally get much worse if they are not treated properly. So, it’s always important to see a doctor for medical reasons.
It’s also important to see a doctor for legal reasons. Insurance companies have adjusters, investigators, and lawyers that start working right away to protect the company purse strings.
Head injuries are perhaps the most common concealed car crash injuries. The brain is very good at hiding its own injury. That’s usually why concussed football players beg their coaches to let them back in the game. They legitimately feel fine.
Head injuries are not only difficult to diagnose after car crashes. They’re also very common. Car accidents feature all three major head injury causes:
- Trauma: In a high-speed wreck, may people slam their heads against dashborards. Additionally, loose objects in the passenger area, like cell phones, become high-speed missiles that often hit people’s’ heads.
- Motion: The sudden forward-and-backward head and neck motion in a car crash usually causes whiplash. This soft tissue injury does not show up on X-rays and other common diagnostic tools. If not treated properly, whiplash often causes severe headaches and loss of functionality.
- Noise: Many car crash witnesses say the noise is like an explosion. This sudden loud noise generates a shock wave, and this shock wave disrupts brain functions. Many of the head injuries in Iraq and Afghanistan are noise-related head injuries.
Internal bleeding is another hidden injury. Emergency responders are usually concerned with external trauma injuries. If the victim has an internal injury, which is rather common, doctors may not find it for several hours. In the meantime, it continues leaking blood. The weakness makes it difficult to recover from injury, and the bleeding raises the possibility of infection.
The Last Clear Chance Doctrine in Florida
Especially in head-on and rear-end crashes, there may be a difference between fault at the scene and liability in court. For example, in the above story, the passenger car driver would almost certainly be faulted for the crash. But if the claim went to court, the outcome may be different.
The last clear chance doctrine often applies in these situations. If the victim had a chance to avoid the crash, perhaps by changing lanes, yet did not do so, the victim is legally responsible for damages.
Significantly, the last clear chance doctrine only applies if the victim had the last clear chance to avoid the wreck, as opposed to any possible chance. It’s practically impossible to dodge an oncoming car if you are driving a school bus. Such a maneuver probably would not work, and would probably place the child passengers at even greater risk.
Contact Experienced Lawyers
Car crash injury victims may be entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced Tampa car accident attorney, contact The Matassini Law Firm, P.A. We routinely handle matters in Hillsborough County and nearby jurisdictions.