Drunk Driving Bus Accidents in Dallas
Anyone who operates a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs or alcohol puts not only themselves at risk but also anyone who shares the road with them. Unfortunately, it is not unheard of for commercial and public bus drivers to be responsible for driving while intoxicated or for those drivers to end up causing serious harm to multiple people at once through their reckless and illegal misconduct.
While filing suit over a drunk driving bus accident in Dallas might seem easy at first, it can be deceptively difficult to prove to the court’s satisfaction that a bus driver was drunk and that their intoxication was the primary cause of your injuries. Representation from a seasoned bus accident lawyer can go a long way toward helping you obtain the compensation you deserve after an incident like this.
When Is a Bus Driver “Impaired” Under State Law?
In Texas, anyone who drives with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) equal to or greater than 0.08 percent has committed the criminal offense of driving while impaired (DWI), as has anyone whom a police driver determines to be “impaired” by alcohol, medication, or illegal drugs. However, for people with commercial driver’s licenses, which are generally mandatory for those driving commercial and public buses, the legal limit is a 0.04 percent BAC, a regulation established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
Any bus driver convicted of DWI in criminal court may face severe criminal penalties, including steep fines and jail time, as well as administrative sanctions that typically include prolonged license suspensions or revocations.
Someone does not need to be convicted of DWI in Dallas for them to be “at fault” for a drunk driving bus accident. This is because the “standard of proof” for establishing civil fault in Texas is less stringent than the standard applicable to criminal cases, so a civil lawsuit can proceed even when the defendant driver is not criminally guilty of a DWI.
Establishing Liability for Drunk Driving Bus Crashes
Violating any traffic law qualifies as a legally actionable “breach” of the duty of care all drivers on public roads owe each other. Therefore, any public transportation driver convicted of this offense following a traffic accident in Dallas is responsible for the incident’s negative effects. When there is no DWI conviction to build a case around, it may be possible to establish that a bus driver was drunk through other evidence like witness testimonies, receipts from alcohol purchases, and debris from the accident scene.
Bus companies—or government bodies that oversee public transit—can be held vicariously liable for their employee’s misconduct or directly liable for their negligent hiring practices. A knowledgeable legal professional in Dallas could provide vital help with establishing who bears responsibility for a particular drunk driving bus accident and fight to get the victim the most compensation possible.
Contact an Attorney in Dallas for Help After a Drunk Driving Bus Accident
While bus drivers rarely cause collisions by driving drunk, these incidents happen, often causing catastrophic harm to everyone involved. When an intoxicated bus driver hurts you, you have the right to demand substantial civil restitution from the liable party.
Recovering for injuries caused by drunk driving bus accidents in Dallas is virtually always easier with help from dedicated legal counsel. Call today to discuss your options.