What Do I Need to Know About Train Accident Lawsuits?

Roughly 34 million people use mass transportation, including trains, every day. Sadly, train accidents have spiked in recent years. In fact, in 2022, 954 people were killed in railway accidents, an 11% rise from the 859 who were killed the year before. Being injured in a train wreck is much more complicated than a motor vehicle accident. Not only are train accidents often catastrophic, but determining liability is usually a complicated process. This is because multiple parties are often involved and certain state laws make it very hard to bring lawsuits against specific entities. These problems are exceptionally challenging for injured victims to overcome, but a skilled Norfolk train accident attorney from Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp will know the best way to handle them while ensuring that your rights are protected.  

Am I Entitled to Sue for Damages After a Railway Accident?

Yes, if sustained an injury that can be directly linked to someone else’s negligence, you might be eligible to pursue damages against the at-fault party via a civil lawsuit. If another party’s negligence resulted in the death of a loved one in a train accident, you may be able to file a wrongful death suit. In either situation, you should speak with a qualified train accident attorney as soon as possible to determine if you have a valid case for legal action.  

Who Is Liable for My Train Accident?

Depending on how you were injured, liability for a railroad accident will be assigned to the person or company whose negligence caused or contributed to your injury or the death of your family member. 

Potentially liable parties can include:

  • A passenger on the train
  • The train conductor or engineer
  • The driver of a passenger vehicle
  • A pedestrian
  • A train employee
  • A part manufacturer
  • The rail company

To have a valid lawsuit, you have to demonstrate that someone else’s negligent actions led to your damages. Unfortunately, this connection is not always readily apparent. An experienced Norfolk train accident attorney can review the facts of your case and determine if someone else is liable for your injuries.

What Damages Am I Eligible for After a Train Accident?

Whether you were a passenger on the train, a train employee, or a victim outside of the train, you could be entitled to collect multiple forms of damages. Based on the circumstances surrounding your accident, a knowledgeable Virginia Beach train accident lawyer could recover compensation for:

  • Lost wages 
  • Lost future wages for permanent injuries
  • Current and projected medical expenses
  • Modifications to your vehicle and/or home
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Wrongful death damages if a death resulted from the accident

Your lawyer will pursue maximum financial compensation for your injuries and other damages and handle all legal matters on your behalf so you can focus on your recovery. 

Can I File a Lawsuit if I Am Employed By the Rail Company?

Railroad employees are able to file a suit against their employer if they sustained an illness or injury due to employer negligence. They may do so under the Federal Employers Liability Act, which gives railway employees the right to claim damages via a civil suit.  

Those entitled to file for on-the-job illnesses and injuries include:  

  • Train engineers
  • Train conductors
  • Train operators
  • Railroad flagmen
  • Maintenance technicians
  • Rail car repairmen
  • Track laborers

A rail worker may also be able to sue if they are injured while not fulfilling tasks directly related to their job. For instance, slipping on a hazard while walking to another part of the job site or being hit by a falling object while on the property could potentially be covered under the FELA.

Do You Have Questions About a Potential Train Accident Lawsuit?

If you were injured in a train accident caused by someone else’s negligence, reach out to the Norfolk train accident lawyers at Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp. We can conduct a full investigation, collect records, statements, and other evidence that supports your claim, and maximizes your compensation. These are the methods we used to secure a $133,000 settlement for the mother of two young children after they were badly injured when their car was hit at a passive train crossing. To schedule a free consultation, call us at (833) 997-1774 or fill out our simple contact form. Our offices are in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, and Hampton. 


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