Train and railroad accidents are not exceedingly common, but when they do happen, they have the potential to result in widespread and devastating losses. This is because trains are massive, high speed machines that often transport many people – people who chose to ride the train because they believed it was a safe form of transportation and that all parties responsible for the operation of tracks and trains would uphold their legal duty to keep passengers free from preventable harm. This also includes the general public who travel over railroads under the assumption that tracks and signals are operating as they should and in a way that will prevent collisions.
Unfortunately, as many high profile train accidents have shown in recent years, train accidents can and do happen. Often, they are the result of some important party that fails to uphold its legal duty to operate safely and without negligence. When negligence does result in a railroad accident, victims and families have every right to pursue a financial recovery of their damages.
At Scott H. Palmer, P.C., our team of Addison personal injury lawyers fights for victims who were harmed by the negligent or careless acts of others. If you or someone you love has been hurt in a train or railroad accident in Texas, our award-winning lawyers are available to review your case free of charge, and discuss how we may be able to help you hold the at-fault party accountable for your damages.
While railroad accidents can result from and involve many different issues, our team has focused on some of the common general types of railroad accident lawsuits victims can file:
- Personal Injury – As with any negligence lawsuit, victims injured in railroad accidents that could or should have been prevented can file personal injury lawsuits to recover compensation for the damages they suffered, including their medical expenses, emotional injuries, lost work wages, and more. Personal injury claims focus on demonstrating that some party was negligent in their actions, and that their negligence more likely than not caused an accident and injury.
- Wrongful Death – Due to the nature of train accidents, many of them have a high potential for resulting in death. If the accident was preventable, certain family members of a deceased victim may have the right to pursue compensation by filing a wrongful death claim. Wrongful death claims allow relatives to obtain justice by holding the at-fault party accountable, and can provide compensation for their emotional injuries, loss of financial and emotional support, funeral expenses, and more.
- Tort Claims Act – In legal speak, the tort claims act is a federal law that allows victims who have been harmed as the result of government entities to file claims for their compensation. Because many railroads are operated or owned by government entities, victims may need to file claims against the government, which is permitted under the Tort Claims Act.
These are the general types of claims that can be filed following a train or railroad accident, but they don’t necessarily describe all the types of train accidents and causes for which victims commonly file lawsuits. Examples of situations where these claims can be filed include:
- Train derailment or collision
- Operator error or negligence
- Defective signals or crossings
- Poorly maintained tracks or trains
- Exposure to hazardous materials after a train accident
- Defective products or equipment that leads to malfunction
- Inadequate safety measures or emergency response
If you have questions about train and railroad accidents, including those involving motor vehicles at or near crossings, our team is standing by to discuss your situation during a free case review. Contact Scott H. Palmer, P.C. today.