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Public transport accident claims

If you have been injured on public transport through no fault of your own, you may be able to claim financial compensation for any loss of earnings, medical fees or rehabilitation costs you have incurred as a result of your injuries.

Last updated on November 7th, 2023

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Key points for making an injury claim

The most important things to remember when making a claim for an accident on public transport

  • Operators of public transport have a legal duty of care to all passengers. If you have been injured because this duty of care has been breached, you can claim compensation
  • You have up to three years from the date of the accident or three years from the date a medical professional diagnosed your injuries to start your claim
  • Compensation amounts you may be able to claim for an accident on public transport will depend on the severity of the injuries you suffered and the long-lasting impact they may have on your life and your loved ones

When can I make a public transport accident claim?

You can make a public transport accident claim if you can prove that someone else’s negligence caused your injuries. In most cases, you have three years from the accident date to claim.

Most public transport accident claims occur on buses and trains. The bus and train companies have a legal duty of care to all passengers. If you have been injured because this duty of care has been breached, you can claim compensation.

Public transport operators have to abide by The Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957. This law is in place to ensure there is a duty of care for all passengers. This means the public transport company has to ensure that all vehicles are maintained to specific standards and that certain health and safety regulations are met.

The Public Service Vehicles (Conduct of Drivers, Inspectors, Conductors and Passengers) Regulations 1990 ensures that all drivers should abide by specific standards when operating vehicles.

Speak with our specialist road traffic accident claims solicitors today to find out if you can claim compensation if you’ve been injured on public transport.

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When can I make a bus accident claim?

If you’ve been injured on a bus through no fault of your own, you may be able to claim compensation from the bus company.

Buses can be busy places, with drivers looking to keep to schedules and passengers stepping on and off, sometimes leading to accidents.

Sometimes bus journeys aren’t the most comfortable of public transport experiences. Accidents can occur while you’re making your way to your seat, such as if the driver pulls away too quickly and you’re unable to hold onto a handrail before you find a seat. In addition, injuries can occur if you happen to slip on a wet floor caused by a spillage that hasn’t been cleaned up.

Injuries can occur while you’re seated too. Without a legal requirement for seat belts, you may be thrown out of your seat or hit your head on the seat in front if the driver brakes too quickly or is driving erratically. You may also claim if you’ve suffered whiplash.

We also see bus accident compensation claims when a passenger has either been trapped and injured by closing doors if the driver has shut them too quickly. Speak with our experienced no win no fee solicitors today to see if you can make a claim.

We understand the financial impact of an accident.

In 99% of cases, we recovered more compensation than the insurer’s first offer. We’ll provide financial security with our interim payments wherever possible, meaning you don’t need to rush into an offer that is lower than you’re legally entitled to.

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When can I make a train accident compensation claim?

You can claim compensation if you’ve been injured on a train or at a station and the cause of your injuries was someone else’s negligence.

One of the rail network’s primary responsibilities is to keep its passengers safe from harm. The law states that train operators have a duty of care to all who travel on their train services. If you are injured because that duty of care is compromised, you can claim compensation.

Many train accident compensation claims result from poorly maintained stations and trains. Such accidents may include:

  • Faulty train doors closing unexpectedly on passengers
  • Insufficient warning of the gap between the train and the platform leading to falls
  • Slips, trips and falls from wet, slippery or uneven platforms and stairs
  • Slips, trips and falls caused by poorly lit platforms, ticketing locations and stairs
  • Injuries caused by ticket barriers not working correctly
  • Damaged handrails leading to falls
  • Damaged seats leading to cuts and soft tissue injuries
  • Falling suitcases and bags from luggage racks leading to head and brain injuries.

How long after an accident can I claim compensation?

How long do I have to make a public transport accident claim?

If you have been injured on a bus or a train, you have up to three years from the date of the accident or three years from the date a medical professional diagnosed your injuries to start a public transport claim.

If you are claiming for a child, you have until the child reaches their 21st birthday to start your claim.

The three-year time limit to claim compensation is known as the statute of limitations and applies to all personal injury claims. However, the three-year time limit does not apply if you claim on behalf of someone with limited mental capacity or if the injuries prevented them from claiming within three years.

However, we recommend starting your claim as soon as possible, as this can help our solicitors prepare your case by having access to vital evidence before it may be lost. The incident will also be fresh in your mind.

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We have recovered an additional £21.2m more in compensation for clients who switched to us from their previous firm.

Contact us now to discover the real value of your claim.

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How much compensation can I claim for accidents on public transport?

Compensation amounts you may be able to claim for an accident on public transport will depend on the severity of the injuries you suffered and the long-lasting impact they may have on your life and your loved ones.

Public transport accident injury compensation claims calculator

Our public transport accident injury claims calculator below provides a guide to the approximate amount of compensation you may be able to claim for your injuries.

The calculator considers the part of your body you have injured and the severity of your injuries and provides an approximate compensation payout based on recent case law and the Judicial College Guidelines.

Alternatively, see our table of public transport accident compensation amounts at the bottom of this page.

Find out how much you could claim

Minimum Amount -
Maximum Amount -

Compensation amounts are estimated based on the level of injury below

These amounts shown in our calculator only consider the compensation you could claim for your injuries, known as General Damages.

In addition, you can also claim for Special damages to cover expenses you may have already incurred or will incur because of your injury.

Such expenses may include, but would not be limited to;

  • Any loss of income or pension
  • Any medical treatment to date or medical treatment associated with your rehabilitation
  • Any costs for the care you may have or will need to receive, even if provided by a family member
  • Any out-of-pocket expenses you or anyone who has cared for you may have incurred
  • Any out-of-pocket expenses you may have incurred because of your injuries

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What are the most common types of injuries claimed for accidents on public transport?

Although no two accidents are the same, our extensive experience in handling claims for accidents on public transport shows that the following types of injuries are the most commonly claimed for:

Can I make a no win no fee public transport accident claim?

Yes. Our public transport accident claims legal services are offered on a no win, no fee basis, meaning you won’t pay a penny if you don’t win your claim.

Additionally, with Express solicitors, there are no upfront costs or hidden charges, and you’ll never be out of pocket. In some cases, we may even be able to provide you with an interim payment if your injuries are serious.

What is a no win no fee agreement?

No win no fee agreements are also known as Conditional Fee Agreements (CFA). This agreement means that there is only a fee on the condition that you win your claim. It means you are safe to pursue a compensation claim knowing that you have no financial risk if it’s unsuccessful.

When your claim is successful, the other side (typically their insurer) pays most of the legal costs, and the law firm takes a pre-agreed fixed percentage of the compensation. This means you’d never be out of pocket when claiming.

In addition, we take out an insurance policy on your behalf, which protects you in the rare event the claim isn’t successful. This is known as an After The Event (ATE) insurance policy, which means you have no upfront costs and nothing to pay if you lose the case.

We provide unlimited legal advice at the outset of all claims, so don’t hesitate to contact us. We can assess your claim and explain the no win no fee process on our first call.

Why should you choose us?

100% No-Win-No-Fee

Contact us with the comfort of knowing you’ll never be at financial risk when you claim with us. We cover all legal costs, never charge upfront fees, and we only get paid if you

Advanced payments available

We understand how an accident can affect your financial position. We always look to collect an early compensation (interim) payment where possible.

We can take over your case

With legal specialists for every type of accident claim, we can take over your claim at any stage from another solicitors. We take pride in winning cases other firms turn down.

What evidence do I need to provide to support my claim for compensation?

To successfully claim compensation for an accident on public transport, you will need to prove that someone else was either partly or fully responsible for your injuries.

The more evidence you can provide, the easier and quicker it may be to claim the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

Such evidence may include the following:

  • The date and time and the location the accident happened
  • Any details you can remember about the accident and who you think is to blame
  • A copy of the accident report taken by the bus or train company. (All bus and train companies are required by law to record all accidents. We can find the report if you do not have it.)
  • The name and driver number of the bus driver (for bus accident claims)
  • Photographs or video of the accident scene
  • Contact information for any eyewitnesses to the accident
  • If there was CCTV footage available
  • Details of the medical treatment you received either at the scene or at a hospital or GP

Don’t worry if you don’t have all of this information. Our specialist road accident claim solicitors can help compile this information for you.

Unlimited legal support.

That’s right, we provide unlimited legal support for our prospective clients. Not sure if you have a claim, or if you even want to make a claim? You can speak with us for as long as you like and as many times as you like. We’ll let you know your legal rights, completely free of charge and with no obligation to make a claim.


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What is the claim process for a public transport accident claim?

The first step is to contact our specialist personal injury solicitors. We offer unlimited free legal advice to prospective clients. We will ask you about your accident and can advise if you have a right to claim compensation.

If you choose to proceed with the claim, the process usually breaks down into three phases.

  • 1. We will gather as much evidence as possible to support your claim and present this to relevant parties, informing them you are making a claim.
  • 2. We will then negotiate a settlement with the other party, ensuring you receive the amount of compensation you are legally entitled. The length of time the claim may take will depend on how quickly the other party admits liability.
  • 3. If your claim is successful and the other party admits liability, you will receive the agreed compensation amount.

Frequently asked questions about claiming for accidents on public transport

How long will my public transport accident compensation claim take?

The time your case may take to settle will depend on how complex your case may be and how quickly the person at fault admits liability.Some cases can take as little as three months, while others can take considerably longer.Speak to our specialist road accident solicitors today about your claim, and we can advise you on the length of time your claim may take.

Will I have to go to court for a public transport accident claim?

It is rare that a public transport accident claim will have to go to court, as over 95% of claims are settled out of court. Even if your claim goes to court, you may not be required to attend.

I work on public transport and had an accident. Can I claim?

Yes, you can claim compensation if you've been injured. If you work for a public transport company, your employer has a duty of care to you as an employee. If this duty of care has been breached, you can make an accident at work compensation claim.

Can I claim if I fell because the bus driver pulled away from the stop too quickly?

While bus drivers are not obligated to wait until all passengers are seated, they must be considerate in their actions when leaving and arriving at bus stops. If due consideration was not taken, and you were injured as a result, you may be able to claim.

Compensation claim amounts for injuries caused by accidents on public transport

Part of bodySeverity of injuryAmount of compensationTypes of injuries
HeadMinor£1,880.00 to £10,890.00Covers head injury with recovery within a few weeks. Higher compensation if symptoms include headaches.
HeadModerate£13,430.00 to £112,130.00Symptoms ranging from poor concentration, lower and higher risk of epileptic attacks, minor personality changes, depression, more severe intellectual impairment, or injuries/symptoms leading to a vegetative state.
HeadSerious£186,890.00 £240,590.00Covers reduced life expectancy, serious physical symptoms, serious changes to personality or intellect, large dependence on others due to paralysis or otherwise.
HeadSevere£240,590.00 to £344,640.00Covers minimally conscious state (life expectancy less than 15 years), severe disability, brain damage with little/no response, vegetative states needing full-time nursing.
EyeSevere£56,080.00to £229,260.00Complete blindness on one/both eyes or severe visual impairment on one/both eyes.
FaceMinor£1,460.00 to £7,460.00Light or no scarring on the face, but no fractures, loss/damage of one/two front teeth, simple fractures of the jaw or nose, but with a possibility of complete recovery.
FaceSerious£15,320.00 to £26,010.00More serious fractures such as a broken jaw or nose, breaking/damage/loss of several teeth.
FaceSevere£26,010.00 to £38,850.00Severe injuries resulting in facial disfigurement, several jaw fractures, chronic tooth pain, and scarring. May lead to eating restrictions or higher risk of joint arthritis. Covers negative effects on mental health.
Ear/ hearingMinorUp to £5,980.00Possible Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL), slight/occasional tinnitus.
Ear/ hearingModerate£12,700.00 to £25,350.00Partial hearing loss or mild to severe tinnitus.
Ear/ hearingSerious£25,350.00 to £38,850.00Complete deafness in one ear. Severity varies based on additional symptoms (e.g. dizziness, tinnitus, etc.).
Ear/ hearingSevere£77,430.00 to £120,040.00Complete deafness in both ears. Higher compensation for child injuries also resulting in a loss of speech.

Public transport accident and injury compensation amounts for back, neck, shoulders and upper body injuries

Part of bodySeverity of injuryAmount of compensationTypes of injuries
NeckMinorUp to £6,680.00Soft tissue injuries or whiplash with recovery within 3 – 24 months. Compensation factors include severity of pain and amount of negative effects on everyday life.
NeckModerate£7,410.00 to £47,760.00Covers injuries that accelerated a pre-existing condition, disc lesions, cervical spondylosis, serious limitation of movement, permanent and/or recurring pain, all caused by fractures or dislocations.
NeckSevere£56,100.00 to £139,210.00Serious fractures, severe soft tissue damage, chronic pain conditions, disc damage, partial paraplegia, or significant, permanent disability.
BackMinor£2,090.00 to £10,670.00Includes lighter strains, sprains, disc prolapses, and soft tissue injuries. Recovery between 3 months and 5 years.
BackModerate£11,730.00 to £26,050.00Includes: spinal fusion, compressed or fractured lumbar spine (possibly resulting in higher risk of osteoarthritis and constant pain), prolapsed discs and other injuries that may require surgery and a continued acceleration/worsening of a pre-existing back condition.
BackSevere£36,390.00 to £151,070.00Typically requires surgery. Injuries include: damaged spinal cord and partial paralysis, psychological issues, loss of bladder and/or bowel function, disc lesions, impaired movement, arthritis, etc.
ShoulderMinorUp to £6,730.00Soft tissue injury resulting in pain. Full recovery between 3 – 24 months.
ShoulderSerious£10,890.00 to £16,380.00Fractured humerus, clavicle or rotator cuff needing surgery.
ShoulderSevere£16,380.00 to £40,970.00Significant disability caused by severe damage to the neck or brachial plexus.
Pelvis & hipsMinor£3,370.00 to £10,750.00Complete recovery after minor soft tissue injuries. Little or no disability within 2 years.
Pelvis & hipsModerate£10,750.00 to £33,430.00No serious disability, but covers injuries requiring hip operations, replacement of hips (or the need for either in the future).
Pelvis & hipsSevere£33,430.00 to £111,690.00Severe hip/pelvis fractures resulting in bowel damage or spinal fusion, childbirth complications, hip replacement, and/or leading to higher likelihood of future surgery.
Scarring (not facial)Minor£2,020.00 to £7,380.00One noticeable scar or several superficial, unsightly scars on the legs, arms, or hands.
Scarring (not facialModerateUp to £7,380.00Full recovery within 2 years, up to a partial recovery with symptoms that are not largely debilitating.
Scarring (not facialSevere£6,680.00 to £19,390.00Several noticeable laceration scars or a single disfiguring scar.

Public transport accident and injury compensation amounts for arm, hand, and finger injuries

Part of bodySeverity of injuryAmount of compensationTypes of injuries
ArmMild£5,630.00 to £16,380.00Fractured forearm.
ArmModerate£16,380.00 to £33,430.00Serious arm injury leading to long-lasting symptoms.
ArmSerious£33,430.00 to £111,690.00Serious injury resulting in an inability to use the arm(s) to some extent. Does not result in amputation.
ArmSevere£82,040.00 to £255,930.00Results may include the amputation of one/both arms. Compensation amount will depends on amputated area, whether phantom pain is experienced, and on other effects on the quality of life.
ElbowModerateUp to £10,750.00Includes: tennis elbow, deep cuts, simple fractures, no permanent damage.
ElbowSerious£13,360.00 to £27,320.00Results in restricted movement but does not require surgery or cause disability.
ElbowSevere£33,430.00 to £46,780.00Injury causes severe disability or requires surgery.
WristModerateUp to £8,740.00Uncomplicated Colles fracture or minor undisplaced fractures with recovery between 1 – 2 years. May include use of plasters.
WristSerious£10,750.00 to £20,900.00Soft tissue damage or broken wrist causing some permanent disability.
WristSevere£20,900.00to £51,070.00.Significant permanent disability or complete loss of wrist function.
HandMinorUp to £4,050.00Covers lacerations and crush injuries, and soft tissue injuries (recovery within 6 months).
HandModerate£4,780.00 to £11,330.00Covers penetrating wounds and crush injuries resulting in permanent but non-intrusive symptoms, or soft tissue damage and deeper cuts resulting in impairment of the hand (may require surgery).
HandSevere£24,740.00 to £171,920.00Covers amputation and rejoining of several fingers, resulting in a clawed, impaired, or unsightly hand, amputation of one/both hands (alternatively, amputation of several fingers rendering the hand almost useless).
FingerMinorUp to £4,055.00Includes: full-healed fractured finger bones (healed within 1 year) with/without minor scarring.
FingerModerate£3,370.00 to £5,000.00Includes: complete (or almost complete) recovery after broken finger, amputation or loss of a part of the little finger.
FingerSevere£10,380.00 to £31,350.00Includes: complete amputation of one/more fingers, fractures of the index finger. Compensation depends on level of disability and suffering.
ThumbMinorUp to £4,055.00Short-term, severe pain gone within 3 months.
ThumbModerate£3,370.00 to £10,750.00Covers fractures with recovery within 6 months, damage to nerves or tendons resulting in partial loss of sensation, and cosmetic thumb deformities.
ThumbSevere£10,750.00 to £46,780.00Partial/complete amputation of the thumb, surgical wire insertions, nerve damage, fractures, inability to grip.

Public transport accident and injury compensation amounts for leg and foot injuries

Part of bodySeverity of injuryAmount of compensationTypes of injuries
LegMinor£7,780.00 to £12,010.00Minor injuries with recovery within a few months (e.g. soft-tissue injuries, bruising, cuts, and contusions). Slightly more severe injuries such as simple fractures of the femur, tibia, or fibula.
LegModerate£15,320.00 to £46,780.00Minor fractures with partial recovery, serious soft tissue injury, injuries to one leg (e.g. broken bones, crushing injuries), ligament injuries, compound fractures leading to near certainty of arthritis or instability.
LegSevere£46,780.00 to £240,590.00Severe injuries resulting in extensive degloving, bone grafting, permanently reduced mobility, or amputation of one/both legs (above/below the knee).
KneeMinorUp to £11,730.00Includes soft tissue injuries (recovery within a few months), a twisted knee, lacerations, or bruising resulting in discomfort or pain.
KneeModerate£22,340.00 to £37,070.00Includes: seriously damaged kneecaps, ligaments, or muscles, dislocation, a torn meniscus, acceleration injuries (over several years), resulting in ongoing discomfort or pain.
KneeSevere£44,470.00 to £82,080.00Covers constant pain, severe disability, or muscle wastage. Higher compensation if need for surgery or injury effects quality of life.
AnkleMinorUp to £11,730.00Smaller fractures, but bone has not been displaced. May include sprains, injured ligaments (likely leads to scarring). Smaller injuries can allow for full recovery within a year, without any scarring.
AnkleModerate£11,730.00 to £42,710.00Includes ligament tears, fractures, leading to smaller disabilities while standing/moving. Increased risk of osteoarthritis. Operation/cast needed. May lead to inability to work or call for special footwear.
AnkleSevere£42,710.00 to £59,480.00Severe injury resulting in deformities, disabilities, or even amputation of the body part down the line.
AchillesMinor£6,200.00 to £10,750.00Minor instability due to tendon damage around the ankle. Some more severe cases might involve scarring.
AchillesModerate£10,750.00 to £17,970.00More serious injury and partially ruptured tendon. More severe cases tend to involve disability and/or permanent scarring.
AchillesSevere£21,320.00to £32,780.00Restricted movement of the ankle due to severed muscle tissue. Small likelihood of further improvement of limp and residual scarring.
FootMinorUp to £11,730.00Includes: minor fractures, lacerations or contusions (with complete recovery within 2 years), ruptured ligaments or other puncture wounds that result in chronic pain or a permanent limp.
FootModerate£11,730.00 to £59,730.00Includes: metatarsal fractures resulting in permanent deformity and ongoing symptoms, fractured heels (both), restricted mobility, degloving and heel fusion.
FootSevere£71,640.00 to £171,920.00Injury needing amputation of one/both feet or traumatic amputation of the forefoot (to prevent need for complete amputation).
ToeMinorUp to £8,190.00One or more broken toes with a varying recovery period. Compensation depends on presence of long-term symptoms and speed of recovery.
ToeModerate£8,190.00 to £11,730.00Multiple fractures, crush injuries to two/more toes, permanent disability. May have involved unsuccessful past operations.
ToeSevere£11,730.00 to £47,830.00Severe crush injuries leading to less/surgical amputation of one or two toes (not including the big toe), amputation of all toes or the big toe.

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