While trains are considered one of the safest modes of transportation for passengers, they represent a tough and dangerous job for those who work on them. Data published by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics shows that 11 railway workers were killed and roughly 3,500 more were injured in train-related accidents throughout the United States in 2022.
If you were injured during the course of your employment as a railroad worker, you need to ensure that your rights are protected by contacting Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp to schedule your free consultation. Our knowledgeable Norfolk railroad accident lawyers have represented hundreds of railroad workers, employed by CSX, Amtrak, Norfolk Southern, or other short-line railroads. We have handled hundreds of FELA claims all over the eastern United States since 1985.
How Do Railroad Worker Accidents Happen?
There are numerous factors that can cause or contribute to employee accidents. Some of the most common include:
- Lifting heavy objects
- Repetitive motions
- Falls from a height
- Exposure to hazardous chemicals
- Defective or poorly maintained tools and equipment
Can Injured Railway Workers Recover Damages?
Workers injured in railway accidents are not eligible for workers’ compensation. Rather, they will have to bring a claim via the Federal Employers Liability Act. If a worker was killed, injured, or developed an occupational illness during the course of their employment, either they or their family would be eligible for financial compensation under FELA if specific benchmarks are met.
Whereas a workers’ comp claim does not require fault to be established, a railroad worker who files a FELA claim will be required to show that employer negligence resulted in their injuries. Also, workers’ comp claims are only reimbursed up to a set dollar amount, but FELA does not place any cap on recovery.
If you are a railroad employee who was injured while you were working, an experienced railroad accident lawyer from Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp can advise you.
Who Is Liable For A Railroad Accident?
Depending on the events leading up to the incident, multiple parties could be responsible for a railroad accident. For example, if a rail company fails to exercise due care in training its employees, providing a safe working environment, or addressing any known hazards, it may be held liable for any worker injuries arising from that negligence.
Just like any other vehicle, trains can experience mechanical defects that lead to a job site accident. If this is the case, the train or a parts manufacturer could be held accountable for any injuries.
An accident could also be caused by a third party. Railroad companies frequently hire outside contractors to oversee tasks like the installation of warning lights at railroad crossings and track maintenance. If a contractor was negligent in their duties, they could be held liable for an accident.
What Damages Can Employees Recover After a Railroad Accident?
If you were injured in a Norfolk train accident, you could be eligible to collect financial compensation for damages such as:
- Current and future lost earnings
- Current and future medical bills
- Pain and suffering
Norfolk Railroad Injury Lawyers
Despite carrying extensive insurance policies that include specialized coverage, a negligent rail company is not going to cheerfully admit fault. You need an experienced railroad accident lawyer who has successfully represented multiple clients in railroad accident cases, such as this $330,000 settlement we won for a railroad conductor who was injured operating a derail switch.
Contact the railroad injury lawyers at Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp today to schedule your free consultation. We are Virginia Beach-based railroad accident attorneys who have been representing railroad workers since 1985 with satellite offices in Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Hampton.
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