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Parents File Suit After 7-year-Old Boy Killed By School Bus


The parents of a 7-year-old boy have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against their local school district and several others following an accident in which a school bus struck and killed their son. This is the second such lawsuit filed against school districts this year.

The first case, filed in Texas, alleged that a school bus driver ran over a child immediately following a drop-off. According to the suit, the lack of an extending arm on the school bus allowed the child to walk in the bus driver’s blind spot. Extending arms are standard on most school buses across the country.

The more recent lawsuit is a bit trickier. The plaintiffs allege that the bus driver did not have a valid commercial license at the time of the accident as he had failed to get a medical clearance as is a prerequisite to licensure. However, law enforcement did not issue a citation against the bus driver, suggesting that they do not believe the driver to be at fault for the accident and implying fault on the part of the deceased child. So, you have a bus driver who isn’t properly licensed, but a police report claiming he did nothing wrong.

Are police reports the final word? 

No. Police reports are not the final word. While police do everything in their power to accurately assess the situation, it’s not an exact science and mistakes are made. So, it’s perfectly possible that the police missed something that would be actionable in a personal injury lawsuit. The police do not care about your personal injury lawsuit, so it will be the last thing on their mind when they are assessing a situation. Instead, they’ll be attempting to determine whether or not the driver’s conduct is criminally actionable. In this case, the driver’s CDL expired only two weeks before the accident and it’s not apparent he violated a rule of traffic.

The police report contends that the child was running alongside the bus and attempted to cut in front of it. Ultimately, they did not hold the driver responsible for the accident. The parents contend that there was a failure of policy and that all children were supposed to be dropped off in front of their homes. This child was dropped off across the street leading to the tragedy. The city has vowed to drop all children off in front of their homes moving forward.

Will the plaintiffs win?

 They might get some money, but they probably won’t get an admission of guilt or a large recovery. They don’t have a ton of leverage. They can claim that a policy was violated and the child should have been dropped off in front of their home. However, the child still ran in front of the bus. While attorneys for the city may not want to blame a child for his own death, they’re not going to pay out a ton of money simply because the incident was tragic.

Talk to a Tampa Wrongful Death Attorney Today 

Palmer | Lopez represents the needs of grieving families filing wrongful death lawsuits against negligent parties. Call our Tampa personal injury lawyers today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.


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