Data shows that approximately 1,000 people are killed in terrible train accidents around the country each year. In the greater than 3,000 annual accidents involving trains, thousands more people are injured and left with serious, sometimes even catastrophic injuries that impact their daily lives and leave them with permanent disabilities. With the gargantuan size of railways cars and engines, one thing is sure; anything or anyone that stands in their way, either on the tracks at a crossing or beside the tracks during a derailment, receives maximum damage. And because serious or catastrophic injuries are generally high-dollar claims, railroad attorneys defend their cases tooth and nail in an attempt to minimize any payouts to innocent victims.
Our law firm has a long history of going to bat for accident victims. If you or your loved one was injured or killed by a train, see our Bensalem train accidents attorney right away to determine your legal rights. You may be owed damages for medical costs, lost wages, and more.
Train Accident Causes
The most common causes of train accidents in our country are derailments, in which the train loses contact with the rails, and railroad crossing collisions, when passenger vehicles collide with the train as it goes by. With railroad crossing accidents, it is not uncommon for a pedestrian to be involved, such as when people find themselves walking too closely to the crossing when the train passes. Most railroad crossing accidents are a result of a malfunction in the gates that mark the crossing from through-traffic, causing false confidence in drivers who cross unwittingly, not knowing that a train is inbound. Defective signals at these crossings are sometimes also to blame. In addition, trains that fail to use their lights or horns as mandated by regulations contribute to the number of railroad crossing accidents. Lastly, overgrown vegetation or objects causing an obstruction of the view of motorists may lead to inadvertent crossings.
During a derailment, widespread damage and massive destruction usually occurs. Most derailments result from the conductor of the train failing to follow established protocol and standards that are set out for safety. Faulty tracks, faulty equipment, obstacles placed on railroad tracks by accident, and overloaded cargo holds are also cited for causes of derailment. Derailed trains of cargo can be the source of much destruction, but the devastation is enhanced if a passenger train is derailed.
Accident victims in train derailments and accidents at railroad crossings are not limited to those at the scene. It is sometimes the case that spills from the wrecked train can affect the entire community surrounding the accident when toxic chemicals leach into waterways or groundwater.
As you can see, train accidents can be quite serious, and even those that are minor can have lasting ramifications for victims. If you or someone you love has been affected by a train crossing accident or derailment, get in touch with our legal team right away. Our Bensalem train accidents attorney can weigh the merits of your case and lay out the legal options that are at your disposal.