If a bus injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward

Bus passengers may sustain cuts, bruises, or broken bones during sudden stops, collisions, or while embarking/disembarking due to falls or impacts.

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a bus or coach accident, we can help. If your injuries were caused by the bus driver, or another driver, cyclist, passenger or pedestrian, you may be entitled to claim No Win, No Fee compensation.

With 75,000 bus and coach injuries on Britain's roads each year, you are not alone

In 2022, there were 3 bus or coach occupant fatalities and 74,379 casualties (gov.uk).

Department of Transport (gov.uk) data shows that bus and coach accidents can cause serious injuries - even when there is no collision.

Although COVID lockdowns significantly reduced the total number of bus and coach passengers in 2021, the DoT still recorded 1,505 casualties and 4 fatalities.

The BMJ has stated:

'The significant injuries inflicted on passengers of public buses not involved in road traffic accidents warrant decisive preventative measures by transportation authorities.'

Despite these recommendations, most buses do not have seat belts and the risk of injury remains high.

If you decide to make a bus accident injury claim, your road accident solicitor will take you through every step of the claims process. Your solicitor will be with you until you win your claim and get the compensation you need to move forward.

Do I have a bus injury claim?

If you've been injured in an accident that was caused another person or organisation in the last 3 years, you will be entitled to make a claim for financial compensation.

Find out online if you can claim with our injury claim calculator. Alternatively, you can speak to a claims advisor on 0800 376 1001 and find out if you have a claim in minutes.

Is a claim still possible if I was partly responsible for my injury?

Understanding who is legally at fault for an accident often requires navigating through a maze of legal complexities.

Each year, Quittance carries out a survey of potential claimants. In our 2024 Road Injury Claimant Survey, 5.24% of injured road users felt they might be at least partly to blame for their injuries.

Claiming compensation is still an option even if you were partly at fault. These contributory negligence cases are typically resolved with a split-liability agreement.

Read more:

Can I claim if I feel I was partly responsible for my accident?

How long do I have to claim bus injury compensation?

In most cases, you have 3 years from the date of your accident or injury.

If you were injured when you were under 18, a parent, guardian or adult 'litigation friend' can make a claim on your behalf. Once you turn 18, you have until your 21st birthday to start an injury claim.

What if the driver was uninsured or untraceable?

If the driver responsible for the injury is either uninsured or untraceable, a claim can be pursued through the Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB).

The MIB is an independent that pays road accident compensation to the victims of uninsured or untraced (unidentified) drivers.

Making a claim through Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB)

How much compensation can I claim for a bus or coach injury?

The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:

  • the seriousness of your injury, and
  • any financial losses or costs you have incurred.

At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.

Bus accident injury compensation calculator

Get an accurate compensation estimate (including for multiple injuries), confirm your legal position, and check if you have a No Win, No Fee claim.

Updated April 2024 Compensation Calculator v3.04

General damages

General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College (judiciary.uk) and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

Special damages

Special damages is compensation for quantifiable financial losses you've incurred as a result of your bus accident injury. Compensation can include loss of wages, commission and any other income income, and any additional expenses directly related to your injury.

These damages will also cover any medical or treatment bills, such as pain medication and physical therapy.

Read more:

A complete list of recoverable losses in a personal injury claim

Average bus accident injury general damages compensation

The following bus accident injury payouts refer to the Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases, Sixteenth Edition by the Judicial College (oup.com).

These tables are used by solicitors or by the courts as a starting point when calculating your compensation.

Please note: these average figures represent general damages only, and do not include any element of special damages (e.g. lost wages).

Example Amount
Arm injury
Fractured forearm £6,010 to £17,450
Serious injury with long-lasting effects £17,450 to £35,610
Back injury
Full recovery within 3 months Up to £2,230
Full recovery within 2 years £2,230 to £7,170
Knee injury
Minimal ongoing symptoms Up to £12,490
Mild long-term symptoms £13,490 to £23,810
Neck injury
Full recovery within 3 months Up to £220
Full recovery within 1 year £220 to £1,200
Injuries that worsen an existing condition £7,170 to £12,490
Full recovery within 2 years £1,200 to £3,830
Whiplash
Full recovery within 3 months Up to £220
Full recovery within 1 year £220 to £1,200
Full recovery within 2 years £1,200 to £3,830
Wrist injury
Wrist fracture recovering within one year £3,210 to £4,310
Colles wrist fracture Around £6,750

Understanding the psychological consequences of an accident on the road

The shock of an accident on the road can leave lasting emotional scars, long after the physical injuries have healed.

Our 2024 Road Injury Claimant Survey highlights how common psychiatric injuries are, with 32.47% of road accident claims involving psychological harm. 78.53% of these were also associated with a physical injury.

Bus accident trauma can lead to a phobia of using public transport and anxiety in crowded spaces.

Your solicitor will help to ensure you recieve suitable compensation for the diagnosed psychological harm you have suffered, to support your recovery and provide funding for therapies that may not be accessible on the NHS your area.

Our compensation calculator can estimate your compensation for psychological injuries. Or you can call us on 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor.

Common causes of bus and coach accidents

Bus injury claims are common in the following circumstances:

  • The driver lost concentration and hit another vehicle
  • The driver closed the bus doors before the passenger was able to get off the bus
  • A passenger slipped on a spilt liquid in the aisle
  • The driver pulled away and accelerated while a passenger was making their way to a seat
  • A passenger banged their head on the seat in front when the driver braked abruptly
  • A person standing at a bus stop was hit by the bus
  • Another motorist caused an obstruction, resulting in the bus driver veering off course
  • A passenger was injured by faulty equipment on the bus
  • A standing passenger was thrown off balance by unexpected braking
  • A pedestrian was hit by a bus when crossing the road

Who is responsible (liable) for my bus accident?

The law expects passengers to behave reasonably, to follow the driver's instructions, and to observe bus safety warning signs. However, the driver and their employer also owe you a legal duty of care.

Who is held liable for your injury will depend on the circumstances that led to your injury, for example:

  • If you were injured because the bus driver was operating the bus in an unsafe manner a claim would be made against the bus operator.
  • If a the driver of a car caused a collision or distracted the bus driver, a claim would be made against the other driver's insurance company.
  • If the bus accident was caused by a potholes, a claim might be made against the local authority.

Many buses now carry CCTV cameras which are helpful to both parties. CCTV can prove you were travelling on the bus at the time of an accident, CCTV can also show how the driver acted, helping to establish who was at to blame for the accident.

How must bus and coach operators fulfil their duty of care?

By law, bus and coach operators must take all reasonable steps to ensure the health and safety of their passengers.

Companies must take additional steps to safeguard passengers who are at a greater risk of injury, including:

  • Children riding to school on a school bus - It may be appropriate for drivers to give children more time to take their seat. Handles and other safety measures should also be reachable by children and fit for purpose.
  • Disabled passengers - Buses must be suitable and safe for passengers with mobility issues and who use wheelchairs.
  • Elderly passengers - Drivers should ensure older passengers can safely board and leave the bus, and find their seat safely.
  • Passengers with prams and pushchairs - Buses must have safe spaces for prams to be stored during travel, and drivers should be appropriately trained.

Bus and coach operators must carry out regular safety and risk assessments. Operators must also ensure that drivers are suitably trained and that vehicles are well-maintained.

What should I do if I was injured by a bus?

If you are injured on or by a bus, seek medical attention as possible.

The following steps will then help you and your solicitor to build a robust case, should you decide to claim compensation:

  • Report the incident to the police and to the bus operator.
  • Get the bus licence plate and/or bus number
  • Get the driver's name and number
  • Retain your ticket or bus pass to prove you were a passenger
  • Keep a record of when, where and how the accident occurred
  • If possible, take photographs of the scene of the accident
  • Get the contact details of any witnesses

What if I didn't get the details of the bus or bus driver?

After an accident you may be in shock.

You will not be expected to have had the presence of mind to obtain the driver's details at the time of the accident.

It is usually sufficient to provide whatever details you can remember, e.g. the bus route or service number, and the time and place you boarded the bus.

Your solicitor will whatever information you do remember to build a case.

Bus injury claim case study

Compensation of £580,952 was awarded to a 50 year-old woman in 2014 for the severe PTSD following an injury on a bus.

Injury Details

The claimant boarded a bus and before she was able to sit down, her leg buckled and she fell and became trapped between seats.

She experienced excruciating pain and it was later confirmed that she had dislocated her knee.

As she fell, fellow passengers rushed to her attention, but they were unable to free her from between the seats.

The ambulance took nearly 1 hour to arrive. During this wait, she was under serious physical and psychological distress.

In the months that followed her accident, the claimant suffered anxiety, depression and nightmares about being trapped and unable to escape.

She would often collapse unexpectedly and find herself unable to move, despite being able to acknowledge sights and sounds around her. This was occurring almost daily, making it difficult for her to go out or function at home.

Her cognitive ability was also affected as she struggled to concentrate. Ultimately she had to leave her museum job, and she decided to relocate her family to Wales.

The claimant was subsequently diagnosed by psychologists as suffering from dissociative seizures and PTSD.

Compensation award

A claim in negligence was served on the defendant NHS trust and the case was heard in London at Queen's Bench Division

The claimant relied on evidence from her psychiatrist who categorised her PTSD as severe. The psychiatrist said that every aspect of the claimant's life was negatively impacted, that the effects were permanent and that her mental capacity would never return to its pre-trauma levels.

The damages awarded totalled £580,952.

£60,000 of this compensation constituted general damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenity.

What happened?

Bus accident injury claims are usually categorised as road traffic accident (RTA) claims. Click on the icons below to learn more:

No win, no fee bus accident injury compensation claims

With no win, no fee, you can claim bus accident injury compensation without financial risk. If your claim isn't successful, you pay nothing. If you win, you only pay a pre-agreed percentage of your compensation.

Find out more about how no win, no fee claims work

Get expert advice now

Interested in talking to a road accident specialist about your claim?

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Call 0800 376 1001

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Citations

Chris Salmon, Director

Author:
Chris Salmon, Director