Railroad Accidents

Assistance With Injuries From Trains & Railroad Accidents

According to Operation Lifesaver, Texas ranks highest in the country regarding train accidents. In 2019, there were 73 train accidents in Texas, 4 of which lead to fatalities. Suffice it to say, Texas has a significant amount of railroad tracks, and a considerable number of trains traveling on those tracks at any given moment. With more railroad crossings means more opportunities for potentially fatal accidents.

Of course, trains are massive objects that often travel at very high speeds. While many accidents may lead to fatalities, even non-fatal accidents can lead to life-altering injuries. The party with the most responsibility for the safety of railways is the railroad company. If you or someone you love has been injured or even killed as the result of a railroad accident, contact our seasoned Houston railroad accident attorneys.

Types of Railroad Accidents

The railroad business is varied and complicated enough that a very large number of different types of accidents can occur:

  • On-the-job injuries to railroad workers — ranging from the ordinary slip-and-fall injury to being crushed by a train or heavy equipment
  • Train collisions — injuring passengers, train workers, and possibly third parties near the scene
  • Train derailments — may injure the same people as a collision
  • Toxic spills — may also occur, endangering any number of people who live in the area of the spill
  • Train-vehicle collisions — typically at a crossing, may injure train workers, passengers, vehicle occupants, and third parties near the scene
  • Train-pedestrian collisions — almost always deadly to the pedestrian, but usually not to the people on the train (unless the train driver takes drastic action to stop the train, causing a derailment)

Railroad Work Injuries and FELA

For railroad workers injured on the job, the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) provides the rules for recovery from the railroad. FELA is different from both ordinary negligence claims and workers’ compensation. The “burden of proof” that FELA imposes on an injured railroad worker is not as high as in an ordinary negligence case. And unlike workers compensation laws, FELA does require some showing that the railroad was at fault. In most FELA cases, the injured worker establishes that the railroad violated a safety standard and that the violation contributed to the worker’s injury.

FELA also has unique rules regarding both employer notice and the way that injured-worker claims proceed.

Having a Houston railroad accident lawyer with real experience specific to FELA claims is the best protection against accidentally allowing the railroad to escape rightful liability.

A successful FELA claim allows the injured worker to recover damages meant to compensate for lost wages, lost earning power, medical treatment, pain and suffering, and other damages.

INJURIES NOT COVERED BY FELA

Railroad injuries not governed by FELA are mostly subject to the ordinary rules of negligence. Since railroads are heavily regulated, they must follow many safety mandates imposed by the government. As with FELA claims, an experienced Houston railroad injury lawyer can often establish that the railroad was negligent by showing that it violated a safety regulation.

Proving negligence can be complex and certainly calls for an in-depth understanding of the safety regulations involved, including the letter of the law, as well as what it intended to accomplish.

Help When You Need It

Seeking monetary and legal justice from those who cause railroad accidents can be a difficult and technically demanding task. With that in mind, it’s important that victims of railroad injuries seek exceptional legal representation to make a strong case.

The 35 years of experience in railroad injury law shared between the lawyers at Lapeze & Johns, PLLC, means that we know what to expect in these cases, both from the railroads, insurance companies, and other parties that may be involved. Liable parties are likely to be in no hurry to pay for the damage they caused, but we have the track record to prove that we won’t rest until you’re satisfied. We successfully settle or litigate 95 percent of our cases in Houston and throughout the Gulf Coast. We know the law, the defenses likely to be raised, and how to overcome them.

Call our Houston personal injury attorneys as soon as possible, and get the recovery process started. There’s no fee for a case evaluation, and we only get paid when you do.

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