Could Reconsidering Bus Driver Discipline Reduce Bus Accidents in Broward County?
Broward County auditor Evan Lukic will be reviewing the local process for bus driver discipline, specifically looking at the process of dealing with drivers who have a history of accidents. The review is taking place after a settlement in the legal case involving a local bus driver.
That bus driver, Charles Butler, had been in 21 accidents before his latest legal battle, according to a local newspaper, and 12 of those collisions were deemed preventable. Under Broward County policies, bus drivers who have five preventable accidents in a two year term face losing their jobs. Butler had five preventable bus accidents within a two year term back in 2007 but continued to work – and continued to get into accidents.
An Expensive Legal Battle for Broward County
The settlement in his latest lawsuit cost $73,005 for the county. That lawsuit came about after Butler allegedly was allegedly involved in a truck accident in Miramar in 2009. In that bus accident in Miramar, Butler allegedly struck a city vehicle and the passenger in the truck required knee surgery. Both the driver and the passenger in the Miramar vehicle were not wearing seatbelts.
According to Butler, he had to make a sudden stop after the truck was cut off by another car. He says that the tail lights on the truck were not working and his bus’s bike rack hit the truck. During his ten years as a bus driver for the county, Butler has ten rear-end accidents in Miramar and other communities. After the 2009 crash he served a three day suspension.
Are Changes About to Be Made?
The county auditor is now reportedly looking to see what should be done with bus drivers who have poor records. The auditor will also be examining the process for evaluating and disciplining bus drivers who get into repeated accidents. It has not yet been reported when the results of the review may be made available.
The review will hopefully help Broward County prevent crashes caused by employees with poor driving records. There are already rules in place intended to remove drivers from city buses in situations where drivers have multiple preventable accidents. In some cases, however, these laws do not seem to remove potentially unsafe drivers from city streets.
What to Do After a Bus Accident
If you have been injured in a bus accident in Miramar or any Florida community and the driver has a record of preventable accidents, pursuing action can obviously cause municipalities to consider important safety changes. Pursuing justice in these cases can also help victims get compensation for lost income, medical expenses, and other costs related to their injuries. In this latest case, it was a lawsuit that raised questions about drivers with accident records.
If you have been injured in a bus accident in Miramar or any South Florida community, contact the Flaxman Law Group to arrange for a free consultation to discuss your case with a personal injury attorney. Bus accidents can be complex and can involve multiple claimants and multiple liable parties. Getting legal advice ensures that your rights are protected.