If a public transport injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward
If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a public transport accident, we can help. If your injuries were caused by another driver, cyclist, pedestrian or any other road user, you may be entitled to claim compensation.
You can make a road injury compensation claim with the help and support of a personal injury solicitor.
In this article
You are not alone
3,085 people were injured following a fall, trip, road accident or other incident on a bus in 2019, and 353 travellers involved in mainline train accidents sustained reportable injuries. In the same period, London Underground passengers sustained 5,285 minor injuries, 100 serious injuries and 5 fatalities.
If you decide to make a public transport 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 deserve.
Common public transport injuries
On the railway network, slips, trips and falls were the cause of 63% of injuries in 2014/15. These may have been caused by spillages or litter not being appropriately cleaned on floors or platforms.
Injuries when boarding or alighting from the train were also reported. Being caught in closing doors, or trapping fingers as defective doors slammed shut maybe some of the injuries. Faulty or poorly-labelled steps from the train to the platform may cause passengers to trip and fall as they dismount from the train at their destination.
Luggage falling from overhead racks is also a cause of head injuries.
Less common injuries that compensation may also be claimed for include cuts from damaged surfaces including seats and tables with exposed sharp edges.
Of those injured while travelling by bus, more than 87% of the injuries were reported as being non-collision transport accidents. These are likely to be falls caused by bus drivers accelerating or braking heavily, while people are standing rather than safely seated. Accidents also occur when passengers are boarding or alighting from buses, mainly where the bus drives off before the passenger is seated.
Ferries and watercraft
Although ferry operators cannot control rough seas, operators do have a duty of care to take all reasonable precautions to protect the safety of passengers. This includes securing anything that could move during the journey and the provision of life rafts and life jackets.
Collisions at sea are infrequent; however, ferry passengers have been injured when ships have collided with harbour walls when docking. Whiplash injuries may be sustained by sudden impact, and sprains and bruising may result from falling.
Am I eligible for public transport injury compensation?
You will be able to claim compensation if you've been injured or diagnosed with an illness in the last three years and it wasn't your fault.
Use our injury claim calculator to find out if you can claim. Or you can call 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor. Find out in minutes if you have a claim.
What if I was partly to blame?
Liability for an accident often involves fault on both sides.
In our recent 2023 Road Injury Claimant Survey, 5.24% of injured road users thought they could be partially to blame for their accident.
You may still be able to claim compensation even if your actions may have contributed to the accident. Claims where there is fault on both sides (contributory negligence) are often resolved with a split liability agreement.
How long do I have to start a public transport injury claim?
In most cases, you have up to 3 years from the date of your accident or injury to start a claim.
For an injured child, the three-year limitation period begins on their 18th birthday, giving them until they are 21 to start a 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.
How much compensation can I claim for a public transport accident 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.
Public transport accident injury
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Updated December 2023
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General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).
Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.
Special damages are awarded to compensate you for any costs or losses you've incurred or might incur as a result of your accident. These costs might include loss of earnings, or any other out of pocket expenses.
Special damages may also be awarded for medical treatments or procedures that you might need to treat your public transport injury, including pain medication and psychological support.
Psychological harm after a road accident
Have you been mentally or emotionally affected by a road accident? You are not alone.
According to our 2023 Road Injury Claimant Survey, 32.47% of injured road users suffered a psychological injury, 78.53% of these alongside a physical injury.
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.
Claiming compensation for accidents on public transport
All carriers and other companies responsible for public transport, including bus, train, ship and airline operators, have a duty of care to protect passengers and comply with applicable health and safety standards.
Bringing a public transport-related claim can become complex if a number of different organisations are involved. For example, the rail network involves separate companies responsible for operating the trains, platforms and tracks. A solicitor will determine which party (or parties) is responsible for the accident.
Public transport accident injury claims are usually referred to as road traffic accident (RTA) claims. Click on the icons below to learn more:
How we can help you with your road accident claim
Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, and the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning road accident claims.
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Chris Salmon, Director
About the author
Chris Salmon is a co-founder and Director of Quittance Legal Services. Chris has played key roles in the shaping and scaling of a number of legal services brands and is a regular commentator in the legal press.