Massachusetts residents may have heard about the limousine accident that claimed 20 lives in another state, as it made national news. It also highlighted the lack of oversight in the limousine industry and the lack of driver training. And, limo company officials are taking note of consumer interest in their businesses.

According to one Massachusetts based company, passengers should be more aware of the vehicle they are getting into. They should ask questions about the vehicle maintenance schedules, the training of the driver assigned to them and the cars they are being driven in. These questions could go a long way in saving the lives of passengers in the vehicles and those on the street around them.

By finding out how long a limousine company has been in business and if it meets the state’s requirements or not, a passenger can determine if the vehicle they are getting into is safe. Many people may not be aware that there are two different categories of limos — those that are built in factories and those that are converted into limos.

The former are required to adhere to strict safety regulations, such as having side impact air bags and accessible emergency exits, but the latter are not, which can lead to gaps in safety protocol. Additionally, drivers of limos carrying less than 14 passengers are not required to undergo extensive Department of Transportation medical screening, which can also lead to gaps in knowledge about a driver’s abilities.

A motor vehicle accident is a tragic event, and everyone involved should learn from it. However, those who have lost their family members in a car accident find little solace in the lessons learnt from their misfortune. But, financial compensation could ease the burden associated with the crash and an experienced attorney could help accident victims and their loved ones get justice.