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TX accident lawyerThe morning of July 18 was a terrifying one for some San Antonio-area parents, as the bus carrying their children back from church camp caught fire on Highway 281, near Johnson City in Bianco County. While everyone got off the bus safely, the entire vehicle eventually wound up in flames, totaling the vehicle. The cause was later determined to be a fault in the bus’ engine, which began to smoke and then caught fire. While thankfully, there were no injuries, the engine’s total failure raises legal questions of liability, both between the manufacturer and the church and between the church and the children.

Bus Accident Cases Are Complex

Accidents involving buses can lead to very high casualty counts - between 2009 and 2017, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) estimates approximately a 40 percent increase in the number of fatal crashes involving buses - and sometimes it can be quite difficult to determine how the accident occurred. There are so many potential factors in any road accident - inclement weather, malfunctioning parts, driver error - that anyone can be the tipping point; the Bianco County accident is an exception, rather than a rule. If there had been any casualties, parents would have had to either determine who bore the most liability or choose to bring suit against multiple defendants.

In a case involving a private bus, an action would be brought in a similar way to any other auto accident case (if you are in a crash involving a public bus, there are slightly different rules to follow). If you can establish that the bus company or the driver (or both) failed to exercise reasonable care in their actions and that the recklessness or negligence of their actions caused your injuries, you should be able to recover for your medical bills and your pain and suffering.

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Posted on in Car Wrecks

TX injury lawyerRecently one person was killed in a crash near Coupland, at the intersection of FM 973 and Richland Road. The crash involved two vehicles, with one being fully engulfed in flames when Travis County sheriff’s personnel arrived at the scene. While very little is known about the deceased, it is worth asking whether or not something in the design of the vehicle contributed to its catching on fire as a result of the impact. While car accidents are distressingly common, vehicles bursting into flames are much less so, and understanding all possibilities can keep you a bit safer from harm if you can see it coming.

Negligence vs. Product Liability

All motorists on Texas roads owe each other a duty to exercise reasonable care while operating their vehicles. Normally, in most auto accident cases, a plaintiff sues a defendant for allegedly breaching that duty - this is known as the legal theory of negligence. In a negligence case, a plaintiff must show that duty has been breached, and must also show that they suffered harm because of it that was directly due to the defendant’s conduct, with no other supervening cause in between.

By comparison, product liability cases can often be much more complex. In these types of cases, a plaintiff must establish either that the product had an inherent design defect, that there was a defect in manufacturing this particular product, or that the manufacturer failed to warn of any dangers in use of the product that are not obvious. Texas law on product liability can be particularly strict, especially in defective design claims, because unlike in many other states, plaintiffs are required to establish that a safer alternative design existed - which can be very difficult in most cases.

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Texas accident lawyerMost of the time, auto accidents occur due to human error. However, in a minority of cases, a mechanical problem or other internal issue with a vehicle can also play a role. These cases become more complex than a simple auto accident - if it can be proven that a part or parts of the vehicle were defective, you may be able to win compensation from multiple defendants, depending on the facts in your case.

Texas Product Liability Law

Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind regarding product liability law in Texas is that it is a strict liability offense. This means that unlike in a standard personal injury case, negligence on the part of the defendant does not have to be established - if it can be shown that the defendant’s product (that they manufactured or, in some cases, sold) had a defect, and the defect had a part in causing the accident, they will be held liable for injuries suffered by the plaintiff. This does not mean that the plaintiff somehow has an easier mission; the standard of proof to establish strict liability is fairly specific and stringent.

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Texas accident attorney, Texas injury lawyerIn March, Vulto Creamery expanded its recall to include all of its cheese products currently in the market, including the following cheeses: Andes, Blue Blais, Hamden, Heinennellie, Ouleout, Miranda, Willowemoc, and Walton Umber. These cheeses were sold nationwide. The reason for this recall is that the company’s cheese contains the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes, which can cause illness and death.

The Dangers of Listeria

Listeriosis, which is an infection caused by Listeria monocytogenes, can lead to serious illness, particularly in children, the elderly, and individuals with weakened immune systems. Symptoms of Listeriosis include fever, muscle aches, chills, diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal issues. One of the major issues with Listeriosis is that it can lead to dehydration. It is also highly dangerous in pregnant women. While the expectant mothers may not become ill, this bacteria can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature labor, and serious illness or death in newborns.

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Texas injury attorney, Texas accident lawyerIn September, one Texas woman was in a minor car accident. Instead of her airbag protecting her, the defective equipment detonated, sending shrapnel into her car. Metal and plastic pieces struck the woman in the arms and chest, causing her serious injuries. The Texas woman is suing Honda and the U.S. subsidiary of Takata. Her lawsuit claims Takata knew the airbags used in her vehicle as well as many others were defective and dangerous. This is hardly the first Takata airbag-related injury. More than 150 people have sustained injuries and 11 Americans have died due to the defective safety equipment.

Takata Airbag Recalls

Honda is not the only vehicle manufacturer affected by defective Takata airbags. These airbags have been placed in a variety of models for 14 automakers. Manufacturers have recalled numerous vehicle models made between 2002 and 2015 because the airbags can explode, causing serious injuries or death to the vehicle’s occupants. The source of the issue is that these airbags use ammonium nitrate-based propellant without any drying agent. When the environment is humid or moist, the bag’s inflator, which is a metal cartridge, ruptures. That is why the explosion can include metal shrapnel that can lead to deep lacerations and eye injuries. Overall, more than 100 million vehicles around the world have been recalled, starting in late 2014.

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The sooner you call, the sooner we can build your case, secure evidence and get maximum compensation for your injuries.

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