Disability Transportation Medi-Car
Many people with disabilities in Charlotte rely on public transportation or private medical car transportation to commute to and from work and around town. Private medi-car companies take people with disabilities to and from doctor's appointments, work, and social engagements. Medi-car drivers must take reasonable care when transporting their customers who are disabled or have medical conditions. If you or your loved ones suffered injuries resulting from a medi-car medical transport accident, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we are committed to advocating on behalf of those injured in a motor vehicle accident involving a medical transport company. Passengers on medical transport vehicles or medi-cars may already have to cope with moderate to severe medical conditions. Car accident injuries can exacerbate these conditions and make daily life even more challenging for vulnerable adults. Our lawyers know North Carolina personal injury law inside and out and use their experience to advocate on behalf of clients effectively.Medical Transport Busses Owe Their Passengers a Duty of Reasonable Care
Medical transport companies owe their passengers a higher duty of care than the average person owes another person. Medical transport companies are common carriers under North Carolina law because they transport passengers in exchange for a fee. Common carriers owe their passengers a higher duty of care for their safety when carrying them. Thus, it is easier for common carrier drivers to breach the duty of care they owe passengers through negligent action or inaction. Common causes of injury in medical transportation accidents include the following:
- Passengers left sitting in the medical van in cold or hot climates without the necessary air conditioning or heat
- Unsafe use of chair lifts for wheelchairs
- Failure to use wheelchair brakes
- Failure to properly secure passengers in their wheelchairs
- Failure to secure wheelchairs inside the transport bus or van causing a patient to fall during a sudden stop
- Dropping a passenger who is in a stretcher or wheelchair when the passenger is getting on or off of the transport van
- Negligent or distracted driving that results in Charlotte motor vehicle accidents
Charlotte companies that transport passengers with medical conditions or disabilities must use reasonable care when hiring employees. An injured plaintiff may be able to bring a lawsuit against the negligent employee personally as well as his or her employer for negligent hiring. In a North Carolina negligent hiring claim, the plaintiff must show the following:
- The medical transport employee was not fit to perform the duties of a common carrier
- When the employer hired the employee it knew or should have known that the employee was unfit to carry out the work duties,
- That the plaintiff suffered injuries by the employee’s incompetence, and
- That the negligence of the employer was a substantial factor that caused harm.
Negligent hiring of medi-car employees can be challenging to prove. To succeed in a lawsuit, the injured person must show that the employer had constructive or actual knowledge that the employee was unfit to drive a medical transport bus. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we thoroughly investigate each personal injury case will any information available that demonstrates negligent hiring. When at-risk passenger's health is at stake, employers must hire employees who will safely meet the unique needs of their passengers.Other Parties May be Liable for an Injury of a Person with a Disability
Medical transport, personal injury lawsuits can quickly become complicated. Multiple parties or entities could share liability for the accident. In addition to employers who may have negligently hired the transport driver, other people could share liability, such as:
- The school district if the teacher receiving the child acted negligently in doing so
- The wheelchair manufacturer if the wheelchair itself is a defective product
- The school district if the parking lot or receiving area presents dangerous conditions for the transferring of a disabled passenger from the bus into the school.
- In the event of a collision, the driver of the medi-car may be liable for negligent driving along; however, another driver's negligence could have contributed to the accident
- If another passenger in the medi-car driver distracted the driver, he or she could be liable for negligently causing the accident
At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we fight hard on behalf of our clients so that they can receive the most compensation possible. Contact our law firm today to schedule your free consultation at one of our three offices located in Monroe, Mooresville and Charlotte.