Railroad Accident Lawyer
If you have experienced a train accident in Texas or New York, you need a dependable experienced lawyer by your side. Eric Kirkpatrick has faced railroad companies before and has helped his clients recover the damage compensation they are entitled to. If you have been injured, call an experienced railroad attorney. Call Eric Kirkpatrick today.
Railroad companies provide a great service to many US citizens and businesses. They deliver goods, food, lumber, chemicals, and more across the United States. Many cities use rail as a means for public transportation. However, railroad companies can negligently cause accidents through the use of old or worn-out equipment or the failure to operate in a safe manner. These actions and other similar actions can put the public at risk. It’s the railroad’s responsibility and duty to ensure the safety of railroad employees and the public by compliance with laws and regulations governing the railroad industry and by operating in a prudent and safe manner through best practices.
When railroad accidents occur, they often result in many people being hurt at the same time. Each person’s injuries are unique and often require extensive medical and rehabilitation treatments. That is why injured victims in railroad accidents need an experienced railroad accident law firm to help them understand their options and fight on their behalf to recover the financial damage compensation they are entitled to. Kirkpatrick Law is that law firm. Whether you are an employee, passenger, member of the public, or third-party contractor, Kirkpatrick Law is here to help you recover what you deserve.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Railroad Accidents?
Railroad companies are obligated to maintain a high degree of safety. This applies rather the company is a commuter rail line or a freight company. When a rail line company fails to ensure the safety of everyone on board or passing nearby, the safety of hundreds or even thousands of people can be in jeopardy. The most common causes of railroad accidents are:
- Dangerous crossings
- Defective equipment
- Equipment that is not properly inspected or maintained
- Human error
- Obstructed rail paths
- Reckless pedestrians and drivers
- Speeding trains
- Tracks that are not maintained
- Unprotected railroad crossing
- Other negligent actions or inactions
The law requires each train to have a black box installed to record the train’s complete operation. This box records speed, movements, and direction for federal and state agencies to review if an accident does occur.
The reality is, train accidents occur more often than most people think, and the results are often devastating. Just last year there were almost 12,000 train accidents that occurred at railroad crossings. Another startling statistic is that every two weeks a train that carries hazardous materials is derailed.
How are damages determined in a train accident case?
As stated earlier, train accidents usually result in catastrophic injuries. Obviously, the severity of the injury plays a major role in determining the damage compensation a victim is entitled to. Courts will consider many facts surrounding the accident, the injuries, and the victim’s future quality of life following an accident, in determining damage awards. If you have experienced an injury due to a train accident, call Kirkpatrick Law today to understand your options.
What If I Am in A Train Wreck with My Car?
Car accidents that involve a train are deadly. In fact, according to Operation Lifesaver,
“A motorist is almost 20 times more likely to die in a crash involving a train than in a collision involving another motor vehicle”. Thankfully, most train accidents do not involve cars at crossing of tracks. However, as a motorist, you must be careful. Do not try to beat a train by speeding through a railroad track crossing. Also, pay attention to lights and the crossing guards, they are there for your safety.
What If I Am Hurt While Employed in the Railroad Industry?
Texas is one of the largest freight rail employment centers in the country. There are close to 18,000 employees working in the rail industry in the state of Texas. Over $21 billion in NAFTA trade value is transported by rail in Texas.
If a railroad worker is injured on the job or develops debilitating and life-threatening diseases, then federal workers’ compensation law applies. The Federal Employer’s Liability Act was designed specifically for the railroad industry. It aims to protect railroad employees and to help them recover financial losses.
Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA)
In 1908, the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) legislation was passed by Congress. The intention behind the FELA act was to help protect those injured while working for the railroad. A FELA claim allows a railroad worker to seek damages that are not covered by regular workers’ compensation laws. FELA allows for compensation for pain and suffering. Additionally, it looks at the negligence involved. This is different than having a pre-decided amount that typical state workers’ compensation laws might provide. A FELA claim requires that the railroad worker prove that the railroad company was negligent in their actions and that such negligence caused or contributed to the injury. Once negligence is established the injured worker may recover for the full damages sustained.
Hire an Experienced Railroad Attorney
At Kirkpatrick Law, your well-being is the most important thing to us. If you have been injured in a train accident, don’t delay, call us today. The sooner Kirkpatrick Law can get in there and preserve evidence, the better we can fight for you. Call us today so that we can discuss the best course of action for you.