Coach accident abroad - Middelkerke, Belgium - Legal action
One of the UKs leading travel lawyers has said that the Belgian law under which injured passengers of Sundays coach accident in Belgium can take legal action is designed to help innocent coach passengers, and has called for reforms to EU law to mirror the protection for people injured in coach crashes in European countries.
Clive Garner, the Head of the specialist travel law team at law firm Irwin Mitchell, said Belgian law differs from the UK law in that it provides "no fault liability" for coach passengers. This means that passengers can therefore claim full compensation from the coach operator who may then in turn bring legal action against any third party which may be liable for causing an accident abroad.
This differs from English law which requires a passenger to establish fault against a coach driver or operator. Proposals are being considered by the European Commission to introduce a similar no fault law for international coach travel across the whole of the EU including the UK.
We have been calling for improved coach standards and enhanced passenger rights for several years. This includes the introduction of no fault liability laws for Pan European coach Travel. These laws protect passenger rights and make it quicker and easier to claim compensation in the event of a disaster like this. Garner presented a no fault proposal to the European Commission in Brussels last year and the Commission is due to issue a Green Paper on this topic shortly.
Coach accident abroad claims
Clive Garner who has experience of representing victims following previous coach accidents abroad (in countries including Belgium, France, Italy, Austria, Germany and Spain) confirmed that if the driver of the coach was not at fault, it would be possible for the coach's insurers to re-claim sums they pay to victims from the insurers of any other driver ultimately found to be at fault. Sunday's incident involved a British coach which crashed into a house in Belgium near the coastal town of Middelkerke. Four Britons were seriously injured in the crash including the co-driver of the coach.
The coach, from Rotherham based Leger Holidays, was returning to the UK following a nine day tour of Prague, Vienna and Budapest with 35 passengers and two crew aboard.
Specialist coach accident abroad solicitors
If you have been involved in a coach accident abroad then you may be able to claim compensation. Irwin Mitchell have unparalleled experience in dealing with coach accident compensation claims at home and abroad.
We have helped thousands of people to claim millions of pounds of compensation following road traffic accidents abroad. See our Holiday Accidents & Illness Claims page to see how we can help you.