Jak_1 21:09 13 Dec 2007

My mother (93) was on a bus that was involved in an accident with a car, not sure who's at fault. Mother was the only person to be hurt as she was flung out of he seat and suddered a laceration to the head and a chip fracture to the shoulder. The police are involved and mother ws taken to hospital by ambulance.
As she is 93 her memory is shot to pieces (age related) and so obviously she can not even remeber what bus she was on nr the time. The police will have all those details.
What I would like to know is what is best to do next, I feel that she should get compensation for her injuries etc but wonder about the best way of going about this given her age and memory problems.
Any suggestions would be helpful so we as a family can take the best course of action.

  recap 21:19 13 Dec 2007

I would suggest you contact a solicitor to find out who was at fault in the accident and then pursue them for compensation.

  Jak_1 21:24 13 Dec 2007

I was toying with the idea of one of those no win no fee Solicitors. She obviously has good grounds for compensation as it would have to be one of the two drivers at fault.
Myself and my Sister have been trying for ages to dissuade her from going (Relatively for her age) long distances by bus, especially into a City Centre like Manchester where traffic is as bad as Londons.

  wee eddie 21:35 13 Dec 2007

No win ~ No Fee.

If you win, their charges come off your winnings and are usually higher than your normal Solicitor, because they have to make up for the cases they don't win!

  SANTOS7 22:14 13 Dec 2007

Not quite sure about that statement..

i used a no win no fee solicitor and i was awarded compensation, there was nothnig taken from what i was awarded, it is done seperately...

click here

whether you have a case to answer will much depend on evidencegathered by the police, you can also get a free consultation with any solicitor after these facts are known to decide what courses of action are open to you.

there's some good info in the link...

  Forum Editor 22:30 13 Dec 2007

one of the two drivers at fault."

Not necessarily - although I agree that it's very likely. There could be other reasons for the accident, and the first thing to say is that I'm pleased to hear your mother wasn't seriously injured.

Compensation claims can be complex - to succeed you must demonstrate that there is something to be compensated for - either a loss of income, loss of mobility, loss of quality of life, severe distress and psychological disturbance - that sort of thing. Where physical injuries are concerned the amount of compensation is related to the severity of the injury, and its effect on the life of the injured person. Many claimants are surprised to find that compensation awards are not nearly as much as they had hoped.

If your mother wants to pursue a claim for compensation - or you want to do it on her behalf - your first port of call must be a solicitor. He/she will probably advise you that as your mother was being carried by the bus company a claim would - in the first instance at any rate - be made against the company, which would no doubt pass it on to its third-party liability insurers. Both the bus company and the other driver involved will have provided Police with details of their insurers, and your solicitor will be able to obtain this information.

If your claim is not an insured risk you would have to pursue the matter by suing either the bus company, the other driver, or even the bus driver. Your solicitor is the best person to handle the claim, and I suggest you consult him/her urgently.

  Jak_1 01:15 14 Dec 2007

I will be discussing this with the rest of the family. What you say is right. As far as I am concerned, all I would like is something to be able to take her out for the day when the weather is warmer as a token for the distress and upset.The injuries are niether life threatening nor is there likely to be any permanant dissability. So a token jesture for the pain and distress is all that we would want.
The fact that the police were in attendance and there are the AE medical records does put us on a firm footing. Personally, I am not after a witch hunt. It matters little to me which driver was at fault and an acknowledgement for the pain and distress will surfice. The blame will be sorted out by the respective insurance companies and the police and the law will take it's due course.
We shall see what transpires.

  georgemac © 06:29 14 Dec 2007

something also to consider, was the bus fitted with seatbelts, some now are, mainly school buses and those that carry children. Would be worth finding out - I would guess it did not, but if it did there are probably signs advising passengers to wear seatbelts.

  laurie53 11:09 14 Dec 2007

I too think your first claim is against the bus company. Technically they failed to safely transport their passenger. It is up to them to make their own claim if somebody else was at fault.

I would also avoid "no win, no fee" and use a normal family or high street solicitor.

The no win, no fee merchants relay on insurance companies settling quickly to avoid high legal costs. The settlement is therefore normally lower.

  spuds 11:55 14 Dec 2007

Like Santos7, I used a 'no win-no fee' firm of solicitors, provided by my household insurance company. The contract was in a way, that I dealt direct with the solicitors. In that case, neither I or the insurance company would meet any legal bills or fees, and any compensation in full, would have been awarded to me, if I won. As it was, the case didn't go to a court hearing, as the other party 'settled up' before it went that far.In that particular incident, the solicitors worked on a score of 67% plus on me winning, had they scored below 51%, then they would have not taken the case on, as they would have regarded my chances as a non-starter.

As the accident occurred on public transport, then the official bodies will be conducting their own enquiries. And I would imagine, that your claim if any, would have to start with the bus companies insurance, as it is their duty to provide safe and secure travel.If bus driver negligence is proven, then you would have a stronger case against the bus company.

In all cases, you will no doubt, have the usual 'nothing to do with us- not our fault' disclaimers, thats standard practise. You mother may also receive a bill from the ambulance services due to it being a road traffic accident/incident. I personally would suggest that you do not take action, until you have sought correct legal advice, or contacted someone like the CAB, local Law Centre or similar organisation.

  Jak_1 12:43 14 Dec 2007

At the moment we are just concentrating on making mother comfortable. The police accompanied her to hospital and so there will be the police report of the incident. The bus was a standard double decker wth no seat belts. We are not rushing into anything nor are we looking for mega amounts of cash, just something to enable us to give her a day out somewhere when she's better and the weathr is warmer.

As an aside, there was another accident not far away from this one and roughly at the same time. A old lady was killed in Manchester City Centre by a bus, so mothers' accident pales when viewed alongside that one.

As a note, there has been an increase of RTA's involving busses in and around Greater Manchester. Bus drivers ignoring the usual rules of the road in an attempt to keep to timetables and get to bus stops before a rival company, I have lost count bof the number of times I have been cut up on the road by them. I can not place any blame at presnt as I do not know yet whether the bus driver or the car drver was at fault, the police will let us know that.

I will let you know how we get on as things progress.

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