West Palm Beach Train Accident Lawyer
We are told that airplane travel is one of the safest forms of transportation. What about railway travel? While we don’t often hear about frequent harmful and deadly accidents with train travel, we do hear about incidents that can bring harm or cause death. They can be accidents on passenger trains, incidents involving cargo trains, and even accidents on transportation lines like subways too.
So, if you are injured due to a railroad train accident, who is liable for the damages? Generally, it starts as a question of negligence. Was there negligence involved in the incident? And if so, was it the carrier that was guilty of negligence? For example, if someone has driven across a railroad track and stalled the vehicle, and an accident occurs, is it somehow due to negligence by the carrier?
What Is Negligence?
When you are discussing any railroad train accident, the term negligence usually means that someone failed to use reasonable care while they were operating the train. This could be the conductor or driver failing to maintain a safe speed, someone who loaded the train in an unsafe manner, or an owner or operator who failed to maintain the train in a safe condition. There are other ways that operators can be deemed negligent, too, and that is something that the NTSB (the National Transportation Safety Board) has to figure out whenever any sort of train accident occurs.
When they conduct an investigation they look for the cause of the accident, decide if negligence was part of the issue (as well as figuring out who was negligent), and they may even make safety recommendations to avoid the problem in the future. Their report is often the key to receiving compensation for damages or injuries.
Of course, you may be injured on the job as someone who works for a railroad or shipping firm. This is not necessarily a matter that will be investigated by the NTSB because it may not have been an actual transportation accident. You might be injured in a freight yard or other setting.
An Attorney Is Essential
If you were injured in any sort of railway incident, the very first thing to do once your medical issues are dealt with, is to contact an attorney. Whether it was a minor incident and injury or a major accident that resulted in the death of a loved one, it is of the utmost importance that you have legal assistance.
This is because the railway company will also hire legal assistance at the time of the incident, and will try hard to limit their own liabilities and to settle for as little as possible. No one should come up against legal experts like this after going through any sort of railway accident and/or injury.
Does this mean you should be in touch with an attorney within hours or days of an accident? If it is at all possible, yes you should. You will want to speak with an attorney or firm experienced in liability issues of this kind, and even look for a firm that has a history with railway related or transportation incidents. Though it may be a personal injury case you are going to file, you must never just settle for the first offer that the railway company’s agents make. You could be facing years of medical bills or the loss of income, and you might even be facing the loss of a loved one. At such times it is altogether too easy to make a mistake.
Rather than hoping for the best or trying to just settle quickly, speak first with an experienced attorney and figure out the wisest steps to take for the best outcome.
Justia.com. Train Accidents. 2015. https://www.justia.com/injury/motor-vehicle-accidents/train-accidents/