One of the most popular trips Texans take is to the casino, but a bus crash can turn a fun getaway into a tragedy for the passengers. Common carriers frequently take people back and forth between Texas and adjoining states, taking on thousands of passengers every year. When people buy a ticket and climb on one of these vehicles, it is the charter company’s responsibility to get everyone to their destination unharmed. That’s a major commitment to safety that common carriers have to be committed to, but, unfortunately, many companies seem to ignore it at the peril of their passengers.

WHAT TYPICALLY CAUSES AN ACCIDENT WHEN TRAVELING TO A CASINO?

A bus crash is normally the result of negligence, either on the part of the driver, the charter company, maintenance personnel, or the vehicle manufacturer. In most cases, driver error is the primary factor behind a wreck, though that doesn’t necessarily mean they are the only liable party. Driver error can occur when the driver is overly fatigued or asked to perform their job in unsafe conditions. Charter companies that are poorly organized may push their drivers into too many hours, or force them to drive a route they are unfamiliar with or haven’t been trained on.

These conditions can cause a driver to operate the vehicle unsafely, which was the case in 2013 when a California driver taking people from Pala Casino caused a bus crash while speeding in inclement weather. The wreck left 23 people injured, many of them seriously.

Charter companies should perform background checks on their hires before they are allowed behind the wheel, but such background checks require effort and organization on the part of the company. Every year, authorities discover an alarming number of drivers performing their jobs without a commercial driver’s license or adequate training. In general, a driver should be given several weeks to learn their route thoroughly, but this kind of time investment is rarely made for new drivers.

Finally, vehicle maintenance should be a primary concern for any charter company. Engine, tire, door, and brake inspections must be performed regularly, as any failure of these parts can flip a vehicle or cause it to run off the road. In 2012, a tire blowout resulted in a serious accident in Chicago that forced the driver into a concrete pillar. The wreck left one person dead, and dozens injured.

WHAT KIND OF INJURIES ARE COMMON FOLLOWING A BUS WRECK?

Huge passenger vehicles are capable of terrible damage when they careen out of control, leaving passengers, pedestrians, and other motorists with grievous injuries. The most common include extensive bone fractures, lacerations, burns, contusions, internal trauma and permanent debilitations, like serious brain or spine injuries. In general, recovering from these injuries will be painful, difficult, and expensive. Brian and spine injuries, in particular, are difficult to recover from and will likely require regular physical and mental therapy to treat.

A casino bus crash can leave a person without their faculties for the rest of their lives, and sadly, proper training and vehicle care could prevent the worst of them.