AREAS OF PRACTICE / ACCIDENTS

Train Accident

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Traveling by train is safer than traveling by car or by bus, but unfortunately, accidents still happen. According to the Federal Railroad Administration’s Office of Safety Analysis, there were 11,737 rail-related accidents and 862 rail-related fatalities in 2019 alone. Even non-fatal crashes can turn a person’s life upside down, devastating their health, career, and financial security.

Thankfully, with the help of an attorney, victims of train accidents may be able to put the pieces back together. By filing a lawsuit, they can seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages related to their injury.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a train accident, contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation. It costs nothing up front to hire us, and we get paid only if we successfully resolve your case.

Causes of Train Accidents

While no one on a train wants to consider the possibility that the train’s operator or manufacturer may have made a mistake, the truth is that no one is perfect, and negligence occurs in this industry as it does in any other. Train accident investigations often reveal a preventable cause for the crash, such as the following:

  • Excessive speed
  • Poor track maintenance
  • Train operator error (e.g., failure to brake)
  • Malfunctioning signals
  • Faulty equipment/manufacturer error
  • Derailment

A May 2021 train crash in Malaysia that injured over 200 people was allegedly caused by “the negligence and carelessness of the train driver… who was driving in the wrong direction.” 

Here in the U.S., the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) found that a fatal 2018 train crash in Arizona was most likely caused by “the failure of the BNSF Railway train crew of the intermodal train to operate in accordance with restricted speed requirements and stop short of the opposing train.”

A 2017 train crash near DuPont, Washington occurred because the train was traveling at 78 mph, more than twice the legal limit (30 mph).

And a May 2015 crash in Philadelphia was also the result of excessive speed, with the train moving at over 100 mph in a 50 mph zone.

When negligence plays a part in these crashes, the victims may be entitled to compensation. The best way to determine how much they might be owed is to contact a personal injury attorney.

Train Accident Injuries

The injuries that result from train crashes can be serious, even fatal. Though they vary greatly depending on the type and scope of the accident, these injuries may include the following:

  • Cuts and bruises
  • Broken bones
  • Burn injuries
  • Concussions
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Severed limbs
  • Paralysis
  • Death

With injuries as severe as these, the ensuing medical costs – not to mention the emotional toll – can be astronomical. That’s why it’s so crucial that people injured in train accidents speak with an attorney who can determine if they qualify for legal action.

Types of Compensation

Many people injured in rail-related crashes can file lawsuits seeking compensation from the negligent party or parties who contributed to their injuries. Here are some of the different types of damages they may be able to recover:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of life’s enjoyment
  • Punitive damages
  • Funeral expenses (in cases of wrongful death)

By holding people and companies accountable for their negligence, victims of train crashes not only recover what they need to move on with their lives – they also discourage future negligence and, in doing so, can potentially improve safety for other travelers.

Train Accident Lawsuit Settlements

Here are a few of the more high-profile train accident lawsuits that have reached settlements in recent years:

  • A 2016 New Jersey Transit crash resulted in an $8 million settlement for five passengers.
  • A fatal 2015 derailment in Philadelphia, which injured over 200 people, spurred a lawsuit that was settled for $265 million.
  •  A fatal 2013 Metro-North derailment cost at least $60 million in legal fees and lawsuit settlements.

Though many lawsuit settlements are confidential, it’s clear that serious crashes can have serious repercussions for those responsible – and rightfully so.

Contact a Train Accident Lawyer

The physical, financial, and emotional costs from a train accident can be enormous. That’s why anyone who has been injured in a rail-related incident should contact a licensed personal injury attorney who may be able to help them recover compensation.

Whitfield Coleman Bullock and our associates have a long track record of fighting for people injured in train, car, truck, and motorcycle crashes. Our attorneys have the experience, resources, and toughness to take on large companies and win. We won’t quit until our clients recover the compensation they are owed – and not one cent less.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a train accident, contact us for a free consultation. It costs nothing up front to hire us, and we get paid only if we successfully resolve your case.

Don’t wait. Contact us today.

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