side view of a white limousine

Commercial Vehicle AccidentsMaryland Limousine Accident Lawyers

Limousine Accidents

Safety Rules For Limousine OperatorsExperienced Limousine Accident Lawyers

Limousine accidents involve a blend of traditional car accident laws, common carrier laws and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act regulations. The applicability of federal regulations depends on the seating capacity of the limousine. Different regulations apply to for-hire vehicles with seating capacity for less than seven passengers and for seating capacity of less than 16 passengers. Once a limousine has a seating capacity of 16 or more the limousine is subject to the motor carrier regulations applicable to buses. Determining the seating capacity of a limousine is not always easy due to perimeter bench seating. Minimum insurance coverage amounts under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act apply to limousines of certain seating capacity that operate in interstate commerce. In the Washington metropolitan area limousine companies typically cross state lines and are subject to these requirements.

A commercial motor vehicle is defined as any vehicle that carries 9 or more passengers including the driver for compensation or 16 or more passengers including the driver not for compensation. A class C commercial driver’s license is required for any vehicle designed to carry 16 or more passengers including the driver. Maryland does not impose any greater restrictions. If a driver wants to operate a commercial vehicle with a capacity to transport 16 or more people including the driver a passenger endorsement is required for the CDL. Depending on the size of the limousine the driver may not have any special training beyond a standard driver’s license. Bus drivers must have a special endorsement on their Commercial Driver’s Licenses.

Call 301-888-4878 to schedule a free consultation with a Board Certified Truck Accident Attorney to discuss your injury claim from a limousine accident. Patterson law has offices in Bowie and Annapolis. The Bowie office is located in the Omni Medical Building, 4000 Mitchellville Road, Suite A202, Bowie, Maryland. The Annapolis office is located in the Patterson Law building at 1 Willow Street, Annapolis, Maryland. Both offices are located off of Route 50.

Limo Drivers Are Guardians Of Their Passengers’ SafetyMaryland Common-Carrier Lawyers

Limo companies and their drivers are held to a higher duty as common carriers under Maryland law than the owners and drivers of most passenger cars. A common carrier owes its passengers the highest degree of care to provide safe means and methods of transportation. The common carrier has a duty to use the utmost degree of care, skill and diligence as to matters concerning their passengers’ safety. This duty begins when the passenger enters the property owned, controlled or maintained by the common carrier and ends when a passenger reaches a place of safety after exiting the limo. The Maryland Courts have also held that a bus driver has a duty to take reasonable actions to prevent a foreseeable attack by one passenger against another.

Limousines are often designed to provide privacy to passengers. This privacy can lead to the driver being unaware of potentially dangerous conduct occurring in the limousine.

Proven ResultsLimousine Accidents

Most limousines have seating capacities for 15 or less people. This is purposefully done to avoid being subject to commercial drivers license requirements. Due to the significant volume of event-based business many limousine companies rely on part-time drivers and independent contractors. Driver fatigue is a problem that should always be explored in any limousine accident. Large commercial truck drivers must maintain hours of service records to make sure that they are not exceeding the maximum safe hours of driving. It is not uncommon to find a limousine driver that has a full-time job in addition to driving a limousine. This may pose a problem when a limousine driver attempts to stay alert while driving a bachelor party until the bars close after working a standard full-time job.

Depending on the limousine company the driver may have little to no training regarding passenger safety. Under common carrier law a limousine driver has a heightened duty of care to passengers. In the absence of a training program by the limousine company a driver without a passenger endorsement to a commercial driver’s license may be unaware of this duty. If you or a loved one has been involved in a limousine accident, please contact Patterson Law for a free consultation. Patterson Law has offices in Annapolis and Bowie, Maryland.

George Patterson rocks!
George Patterson helped me recover my medical expenses after a car accident. He was fast, friendly, and overall very knowledgeable. I am very pleased with my experience with Mr. Patterson.

Car Accident Client

Limousine drivers in the area frequently cross state lines and may unknowingly expose themselves to liability related to the provision of alcohol to passengers.

George Patterson

Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney

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If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident or suffered a serious personal injury due to someone else’s negligence please contact the best personal injury lawyers at Patterson Law. George Patterson has been featured in an article published in the Best Lawyers in America. The “best” injury lawyers may be reached at their Annapolis or Bowie offices at 301-888-4878.

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