A collision between a MARTA bus and a passenger car has injured three in Clayton County. According to MARTA authorities, the accident occurred at approximately 6:00 a.m. when a car attempted to pass the bus on GA. 85 at the Valley Hill Road intersection in Riverdale.
A witness who heard the sound of the crash said that drivers often try to pass the bus in order to beat the light.
The MARTA driver and a passenger were injured, and the driver of the car was also sent to the hospital with injuries. The front of the bus sustained significant damage, and the car ended up on its side, crumpled against a pole.
The role of public transportation in Atlanta
Nationally, from 2009 to 2018, there was a 45% increase in the number of fatal crashes involving large trucks and buses, and another 1% increase from 2018 to 2019. Of these numbers, intercity buses accounted for 12% of all types of buses involved in fatal crashes.
MARTA is the main public transport operator for the city of Atlanta. Although the rail system functions primarily in Fulton, Dekalb and Cobb counties, the bus system also includes routes in Clayton County and the cities of Roswell and Alpharetta.
Although public transportation is an environmentally friendly service designed to increase accessibility of the city to its residents and guests, MARTA’s public safety record should be exemplary as well. Public scrutiny of the circumstances of each incident should highlight the system’s methods for hiring and training its drivers to ensure public safety.
Other motor vehicle drivers, however, should share the road and exercise caution when driving near large buses. The sheer size and weight of a large bus is many times that of a passenger vehicle, and buses cannot slow down suddenly or maneuver easily in traffic. In the event of a collision, the size differential can cause catastrophic injury and death.
When driver negligence results in severe injury
Common driver errors that contribute to traffic accidents include:
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Drowsy, fatigued or otherwise impaired driving
- Careless or aggressive driving
As Georgia is a contributory negligence state, the injured party can seek damages even if they were found to be partially at fault, as long as they were less than 50% responsible for the accident. If you have been in a serious wreck and wish to pursue a claim, it is important to have skilled legal representation to review your case to find the best strategy for an optimal settlement.