SPECIAL DUTY OF CARE – BUS, TAXI, LIMO

A vehicle that transports persons for hire, such as a bus, taxi or limo, is called a “common carrier”.

The duty of a common carrier to its passengers is a higher duty than the duty of an owner or operator of other vehicles.

Common carriers have a duty – to their passengers – to exercise the highest degree of care, in the operation and ownership of their vehicles. When a common carrier fails to exercise this high degree of care, it is negligent.

This law applies to CTA buses and trains, METRA trains, PACE buses, school buses transporting children, all buses for hire, even to sporting events. The law applies to all taxicabs where a fare is charged, and all limousines for hire, whether for airport transportation, taking children to a prom, or for a special night on the town.

For example, if it would be ordinary care for a driver of a car to look once before changing lanes, the driver of a common carrier has a higher duty, to look more than once to determine it is safe to change lanes.

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