Suffolk County Railroad Accident Lawyer
Railroads once changed the face of America as their strength and speed connected towns and cities all across the nation. However, these traits that made the railroads powerful also made them dangerous, and they still pose a hazard today. Even with modern safety equipment, railroad accidents often cause serious injuries requiring long-term medical care.
If you are suffering from the effects of a railroad accident, you may have considered seeking compensation to cover medical bills and added expenses resulting from the accident.
You should be aware, though, that the railroad industry is governed under different laws than other modes of transportation, and these laws can have a tremendous impact on how and when compensation may be awarded. Fortunately, an experienced Suffolk County railroad accident lawyer may be able to help you navigate this particular area of personal injury law. Work with a compassionate personal injury attorney that could build a solid case for you.
Common Causes of Railroad Accidents
Given the volume of riders on trains in Suffolk County, accidents among train passengers are quite frequent. In addition, the railroad industry has long been considered one of the most dangerous for workers. While railroad accidents may be caused by any number of incidents or mistakes, some of the more common causes of train accidents include:
- Derailments and crashes
- A worker or passenger being hit by a train
- Falls while working or moving through stations
- Electrical explosions
- Unsafe working conditions resulting in back, neck, or other catastrophic injuries
Compensation Under the Federal Employers Liability Act
When they suffer injury through the negligence of their employers, employees of the railroad may be entitled to recover compensation under a statute known as the Federal Employers Liability Act, usually referred to as FELA.
While compensation under this statute may be substantially higher than that available under Suffolk County workers’ compensation law, there are numerous requirements that must be followed in order for a FELA claim to succeed, and a delay can make it difficult or even impossible to recover. An experienced railroad accident lawyer in Suffolk County could explain the actions needed and help ensure that all requirements are met to help reach the best possible outcome.
Receiving Compensation Under FELA
As a federal law, FELA gives the employees of the railroad the opportunity to receive compensation for injuries suffered while on the job if the injury is at least partially caused by negligence on the part of the railroad or its employees, or if it is caused by negligence in the maintenance or manufacturing of track, cars, machines, roadbeds, or any other equipment or location used by the railroad.
To recover under FELA, injured parties must demonstrate that they are employees of the railroad, the injury occurred during that employment, the injury was caused by the railroad’s negligence, and the railroad was engaged in interstate commerce.
Damages That May Be Recovered Under FELA or Other Laws
Railroad employees injured due to negligence are generally entitled to compensatory damages under FELA. Damages refer to financial compensation in this context, so this would be a monetary award to cover costs such as lost wages and medical expenses and to compensate for pain and suffering. Damages can cover the cost of past expenses as well as future projected expenses. A railroad accident lawyer in Suffolk County could help an individual pursue damages for their injuries.
Contacting a Suffolk County Railroad Accident Attorney
There is a strictly limited amount of time to file a claim under FELA, and the requirements for recovery are specific to this federal statute. However, other state and local laws may also come into play in a railroad injury case.
A Suffolk County railroad accident lawyer who understands federal, state and local laws could be ideally suited to evaluate your claim and devise a legal strategy to help you achieve the compensation you deserve. Call now to schedule a consultation.