Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, also known as MARTA, serves 1.7 million Metro Atlanta residents. At any given time, there are a number of MARTA busses and trains transporting people to and from their destinations around the city.
With all this movement, there are bound to be accidents. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, in 2018, there were 121,000 large truck and bus injury crashes across the United States.
In Atlanta, accidents could occur for many reasons. MARTA bus drivers may be tired after a long shift and fall asleep behind the wheel. A noisy commuter may distract them and they might take their eyes off the road. They could be speeding to get to their next destination or making sharp turns and driving aggressively. Perhaps they decide to drive while passengers are still getting on or off the bus.
In other cases, an accident may have nothing to do with the bus driver or train conductor. The railroad tracks could be rusty or there might be a signal failure. A bus’ brakes might go out after too much wear and tear. An unavoidable hazard might be in the middle of the road. A driver in a car could crash into them unexpectedly.
Whatever the reason for the crash, it could end up being much more serious than a regular car accident. If you have been injured in a MARTA accident, then don’t fret: You can absolutely seek out legal representation and get the compensation you deserve.
What to Do if You’re in a MARTA Accident
If you get into an accident on or with a MARTA bus or train, then the first thing to do is call the police if the driver or another passenger hasn’t already. Then, snap pictures of the scene of the accident including your injuries, the bus or train involved (including the license plate), any other vehicles that were involved and the general area surrounding it. Collect witness statements from other riders or people at the scene as well as their contact information, and ask the driver for their information as well. Look around the scene to see if there were any cameras that were recording what happened and note their locations.
Then, go to the hospital right away. Get a full check-up and tell the doctor about any pain you are experiencing. Ask for X-rays and inquire about whether or not you need an MRI or further tests. If your doctor refers to a specialist, go to the appointments. If they give you a prescription, make sure you fill it and take it accordingly.
If you get a call from MARTA’s insurance company, do not give too many details about the accident, because they may try to get out of paying you a settlement for your injuries. No matter how much they offer, it’s likely to be too low to cover the costs of your medical bills. Keep in mind that even if you just have back or neck pain, you could still rack up hundreds or thousands of dollars in medical costs. You don’t want to be stuck paying those bills out of pocket when the accident was not your fault.
Instead of accepting the offer, get in touch with a personal injury attorney right away. You shouldn’t wait too long to reach out because if you are filing a lawsuit against MARTA or a municipality in Atlanta, then you may only have six months to do it.
Working with a Personal Injury Attorney
When you get in touch with a personal injury attorney, they will go over your case and what happened. They’ll ask you for everything you gathered including your medical records, witness statements and photographs. They will wait until you are fully recovered to see how much your medical bills are going to be. Then, they’ll reach out to MARTA’s insurance company to work out a settlement for you.
If your attorney believes that you have a strong case or they are unable to negotiate with MARTA’s insurance, then they may go about filing lawsuits against the municipality, the driver’s union, Georgia’s department of transportation and other responsible parties. They will attempt to recover the highest settlement possible for your medical bills, lost wages, property damages and pain and suffering. It is notoriously difficult to win a claim against a government entity, but with the right personal injury attorney working for you, you will have a much better chance at winning your lawsuit.
Your settlement will depend on the extent of your injuries and the circumstances surrounding your accident. For example, getting hit by a bus can cause serious injuries such as a traumatic brain injury. This could lead to hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills over the course of your lifetime.
Other common injuries that could occur if you get hit by a train or a bus include broken bones, back and neck injuries, spinal cord injuries, paralysis, amputation, facial disfigurement and a broken neck. Along with paying high medical bills, you may also need to take off weeks or months from work to go to appointments and recover from your injury. You could experience pain and suffering from not being able to work anymore.
No matter what kind of injury you have, you’ll need to contact a personal injury attorney to find out what kind of claims you could bring against MARTA.
Remember that when looking for a personal injury attorney, you’ll want to find someone with years of experience who has dealt with MARTA cases before. They will know the best way to go about getting your compensation and how much to reasonably ask for to ensure you are protected.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in Georgia
If you’ve been in an accident involving MARTA, then now is the time to file a claim and get the compensation you need to cover your medical bills and other costs. Find out how a personal injury attorney can help you by contacting the Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Winston Briggs today.