Subway and Train Accidents

The Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) is responsible for the operation of the subway system, as well as many city buses. The Transit Authority is responsible for providing passengers with safe transportation and properly maintained transportation vehicles. The MTA is also a common carrier.

Common carriers must carry passengers [or property] safely. Common carriers must use the highest care and the vigilance of a very cautious person. They must do all that human care, vigilance, and foresight reasonably can do under the circumstances to avoid harm to passengers [or property]. (CACI 902)

While a common carrier does not guarantee the safety of its passengers [or property that it transports], it must use reasonable skill to provide everything necessary for safe transportation, in view of the transportation used and the practical operation of the business. (CACI 902)

The elevated standard of care for common carriers is “based on a recognition that the privilege of serving the public as a common carrier necessarily entails great responsibility, requiring common carriers to exercise a high duty of care towards their customers.” (Squaw Valley Ski Corporation v. Superior Court (1992) 2 Cal.App.4th 1499, 1507, internal citations omitted.)

Civil Code section 2168 provides: “Everyone who offers to the public to carry persons, property, or messages, excepting only telegraphic messages, is a common carrier of whatever he thus offers to carry.”

“[A] common carrier within the meaning of Civil Code section 2168 is any entity which holds itself out to the public generally and indifferently to transport goods or persons from place to place for profit.” (Squaw Valley Ski Corporation v. Superior Court (1992) 2 Cal.App.4th 1499, 1508.)

If you have been injured in a transit accident involving a bus, subway or train, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. You must file a written claim within a certain number of days of your accident or you will lose your right to pursue a claim. The claim must be filed with the municipal agency where your accident occurred. If you or your loved one has been injured in an accident, Charles P. Charlton can help you. Call Charles P. Charlton for a free consultation immediately at (310)286-0334.