Hero Saves DC Pedestrian Struck and Pinned Beneath Bus

By Peter DePaolis

A Hero Saves DC Pedestrian Under Bus

An elderly Washington, D.C. man was seriously injured after being struck and pinned beneath a Greyhound bus for about 20 minutes near the Washington Convention Center earlier this month. This is when a hero saves the DC pedestrian.

The man was hit around 1:10 p.m. and was pinned beneath the rear wheels of the bus.

The bus was making a left turn onto 7th Street from Massachusetts Avenue at the time of the accident.

People who saw the accident said the driver didn’t realize he’d hit anyone at first, but witnesses ran to the bus and banged on the door. The bus stopped in the crosswalk, and a hero went to the man’s aid.

The hero was medical doctor Coleen Kivlahan.

“I asked, ‘Is someone underneath?,” Kivlahan recalled to The Washington Post the day after the crash. The cyclists told her that yes, a pedestrian had been struck by the bus. When Kivlahan heard this, she immediately crawled under the bus to help.

Kivlahan saw that the man was unconscious and began checking his condition. She found he had a low pulse, a head injury and a severely broken leg.

The doctor tried to do what she could, including loosening his shirt.

It took firemen and emergency personnel about 20 minutes to extricate the victim. Hydraulic jacks were used to raise the rear of the bus and pull the man out. He was then was rushed to a hospital, where he’s in serious but stable condition. Police said it’s a miracle he survived.

What Causes Most Pedestrian Injuries?

The most frequently reported cause of pedestrian accidents is negligence. Whether this negligence is the fault of the driver, pedestrian or poorly maintained streets and sidewalks, someone’s carelessness is more than likely involved. Studies show that children and elderly persons are at the highest risk for involvement in pedestrian accidents.

The accident laws in Washington, D.C. can be very unforgiving to personal injury victims when it comes to finding fault. The District uses a system known as pure contributory negligence – meaning victims can lose their ability to recover damages if found to be at all negligent in the events leading up to the accident.

This is why it is important to have an experienced accident lawyer on your side after a collision, because your lawyer must effectively combat any accusations that you share blame for the pedestrian accident occurring.

About the Author
Peter DePaolis joined the firm in 1980 and has since represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families.