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Train Accidents


According to the Federal Railroad Administration, each year there are approximately 3,000 train accidents in the United States, causing about 1,000 wrongful deaths. The large numbers of railroad accidents that have occurred in the recent past have led to concerns about the railroad industry's measures to cut costs. Reducing the number railroad maintenance workers, increasing cargo loads, and decreasing the budget for repairs have helped to address the industry's financial woes, but, tragically, have also resulted in an increased number of serious injuries.

Inside a train station
Although rare, train accidents are devastating when they occur.

Types of Railroad Accidents

There are four primary types of railroad accidents:

  • Collisions with other trains
  • Derailments
  • Collisions with passenger vehicles
  • Accidents due to mechanical failure, such as brake failure

Railroad Accident Causes

Railroad accidents can occur due to a variety of factors, including:

  • Defective railroad tracks
  • Aggressive driving on the part of a motorist who collides with a train
  • Mechanical failure, often due to insufficient maintenance staff and lack of money for repairs
  • Overly heavy cargo loads, resulting in derailment

Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA)

Railroad workers who are injured while on the job are protected under the Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA). FELA ensures proper compensation for workers who are injured due to a railroad company's negligence. However, FELA is different from traditional workers' compensation in that the railroad employee must prove that the railroad was negligent before they can collect compensation.

Consult a Train Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one has been harmed in a railroad accident, you are invited to contact a railroad accident attorney for more information.

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