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02 Aug

Involved in a COTA Bus Accident in Columbus, Ohio? Here’s What You Need to Do

Introduction

Public transportation systems, like the Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA), are key arteries of life in Columbus, Ohio, helping thousands of residents commute across the city daily. However, accidents involving these transit systems, though rare, do occur and can be overwhelming for the victims involved. This blog post offers an in-depth guide on what to do if you’re involved in a COTA bus accident and how to navigate the legal maze that often ensues.

Step 1: Seek Medical Attention

Immediately after any accident, the priority should always be to ensure your personal safety and wellbeing. Even if you feel fine initially, seek medical attention as soon as possible. Some injuries, like whiplash or internal damage, may not present symptoms immediately. A prompt medical examination can prevent any unnoticed injuries from worsening over time. Moreover, the medical reports and documentation generated will play a crucial role in establishing the extent of your injuries if you choose to file a claim later.

Step 2: Report the Incident

Ensure that the bus driver reports the accident to the appropriate COTA authorities. In the case of a serious accident, local police will likely arrive at the scene. Give a detailed account of what happened. This police report will be critical later in establishing the facts of the incident.

Step 3: Gather Information

As soon as you are physically able, begin documenting the circumstances surrounding the accident. This might include:

  • The bus number, route information, and the time of the accident.
  • Contact information of the bus driver and any witnesses.
  • Photos or videos of the accident scene, if possible.

Remember, the more information you have, the better equipped you will be to prove your case.

Step 4: Do Not Discuss Fault

Avoid making statements about who was at fault at the scene of the accident. Anything you say could potentially be used against you later on. Leave the determination of fault to law enforcement and legal professionals.

Step 5: Notify your Insurance Company

It’s important to report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. However, remember to stick to the facts of the accident and avoid speculation about fault or the extent of your injuries.

Step 6: Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer

After ensuring your immediate medical needs are met, it’s vital to consult a personal injury attorney experienced in handling bus accident claims in Columbus, Ohio. The laws governing bus accidents and claims can be complex due to the involvement of government entities like COTA.

Furthermore, there are specific time limits, known as the statute of limitations, within which any lawsuit must be filed. In Ohio, the general time limit for filing personal injury lawsuits is two years from the date of the injury, but it can be different for claims against government entities. An experienced attorney will guide you through these complexities and ensure you follow all the necessary steps.

Conclusion: Seek Experienced Legal Help

Being involved in a COTA bus accident can be a traumatic and daunting experience, leaving you to deal with physical injuries, emotional distress, and financial hardship. However, you don’t have to face these challenges alone. An experienced personal injury lawyer will advocate for your rights and help you navigate the claims process to secure the compensation you deserve.

Our team at SELPH LAW is committed to supporting Columbus, Ohio residents through such tough times. With extensive experience in personal injury law, we understand the nuances of claims involving COTA bus accidents and will ensure that your legal rights are protected every step of the way. Contact us today for a free consultation at (614)-453-0971.

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