Public Transportation Injuries
What is a Common Carrier?
Any organization which is involved in providing transportation services to the public, such as MUNI, BART, Sam Trans, and even airlines are considered to be common carriers.
Common carriers are defined by California law to include any form of regularly scheduled public transportation, in addition to non-regularly scheduled transportation such as taxicabs, and even elevators and escalators in certain situations.
Why Does This Matter?
Common carriers have a greater obligation to look out for the safety of their passengers than other non commercial entities. In fact they have an obligation to do everything that they can to prevent injury to passengers. In addition, the employees of a common carrier have an increased obligation to anticipate and do everything that is humanly possible to protect the safety of passengers. Vehicles, train or buses must be safe and fit for the purposes that they are being used for.
As these vehicles, trains and buses begin to age and decay, the carrier must continue to maintain them so that they are safe and fit for the purposes that they are being used. If a vehicle, bus or rain becomes too full, the common carriers obligation look out for the safety of all those on board increases. At a time when a passenger may be most vulnerably to injury, such as boarding or exiting from a train or bus; the driver and other employees have an increased obligation to protect the safety of the passenger.
What About the Elderly, Disabled or Young Riders?
When a common carrier accepts a passenger who needs additional care such as the elderly, disabled or young, the common carrier has an obligation to extend as much additional care as that passenger needs. For example, elderly passengers may need more time to board a bus or train, and more time to get seated after boarding. Public transportation employees and expected to know this and to recognize these situations and act accordingly.
If you or a loved one has been injured while riding any form of public transportation, please call us to protect your legal rights immediately.