Liability in New Mexico Explained When a Driver Hit My Child Coming Off a School Bus in New Mexico
While there are many fears in raising children, one of every parent’s biggest fears is their child being hit by a car. This is for good reason. According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), each year an estimated 178,000 children are injured in traffic crashes with over 1,100 of those children passing away from their injuries. Of the total number of Americans killed each year in traffic fatalities, roughly 19% were children 14 and younger killed as a pedestrian. The most common time for children to by hit by a car is after school hours. Which is why bus safety and school zone safety have become a priority for law enforcement and legislators. Thus, when a driver hit my child coming off a school bus in New Mexico, it can lead to serious liability issues.
This is why victims and their families need to call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. We represent victims seriously injured or wrongfully killed in school bus accidents, trucking wrecks, motor vehicle crashes, and pedestrian knockdowns. If you child was hit by a car coming off a school bus in New Mexico, you may be entitled to compensation for his or her pain and suffering, medical bills, and loss of familial society including the love and affection that parents and their children share. Learn how we can help you during a FREE consultation with our experienced personal injury lawyers in Albuquerque, NM.
Child Hit By a Car Coming Off a School Bus
A child who is hit by a car coming off a school bus is likely going to result in a finding of negligence against the motorist or the bus driver. First, bus drivers are trained and responsible for lowering the STOP sign and flashing red lights to notify oncoming and trailing drivers that it is stopping, children are coming to or leaving the school bus, and all motorists must stop at least 10 feet from the bus. This is to allow children safe ingress or egress.
Any motorist that runs this stop sign or red light could be violating New Mexico law. If a motorist that runs the school bus’ stop sign and hits a children could be in serious legal trouble—both criminally and civilly.
This is because New Mexico stat. 66-7-347 provides under subdivision (a) the following: “The driver of a vehicle upon approaching or overtaking from either direction any school bus which has stopped on the roadway, with special school bus signals in operation, for the purpose of receiving or discharging any school children, shall stop the vehicle at least ten feet before reaching the school bus and shall not proceed until the special school bus signals are turned off, the school bus resumes motion or until signaled by the driver to proceed.”
Anytime a motorist runs that school bus’ stop sign and proceeds through the intersection could be liable under New Mexico law.
Establishing Liability When a Driver Hit my Child Coming Off a School Bus
The way to establish liability is through both the common-law and statutory law. Through the common law, a motorist could be found negligent for hitting a child coming off a school bus. This is because all motorists must act as a reasonably prudent drivers under the circumstances in the use or operation of their motor vehicle. Reasonably prudent drivers do not go around stop signs on school buses.
Further, the violation of NM stat. 66-7-347 could result in an automatic finding of negligence under the doctrine of negligence per se. This is where the violation of a statute that is meant to protect a certain class of persons from a certain type of harm could result in an automatic finding after a defendant. Violating section 66-7-347 that results in a child being hit by a car could result in liability against the defendant because that statute is meant to protect child from that very harm.
Ask Our New Mexico Hit by Car Accident Lawyers for Help
If you or a loved one are seriously injured in any type of motor vehicle accident or after being hit by a car, especially if a driver hit my child coming off a school bus, learn how we can help protect your rights to compensation under New Mexico law. Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. by dialing (505) 883-5000 to schedule your FREE consultation.
We handle causes throughout New Mexico, including Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, Cuervo, Rio Rancho, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Albuquerque where our office is located, and anywhere else throughout New Mexico. Please call to schedule for FREE appointment by dialing (505) 883-5000 or contact us through our website’s easy to use and convenient contact box available here.