While train accidents are not nearly as common as car accidents, they typically result in a great many more catastrophic injuries and fatalities than traffic accidents. If you have been seriously hurt or lost a loved one to wrongful death in a train accident in New Jersey, Nagel Rice LLP is the personal injury law firm to turn to. We have a remarkable record of success, having won innocent victims over $1 billion during our 35 years in practice and are well-prepared to fight aggressively for your right to substantial compensation.
Because we recognize that the train accident has turned your life upside down, we can assure you that your initial consultation will be free and that you will owe us no attorneys’ fees until we win your case. Our sharp train accident attorneys will be laser-focused on identifying the party responsible for your injuries and holding that party accountable. We know the devastation a train accident can cause. You can count on us to provide not only dedicated legal representation but emotional support.
Types of Train Accidents
There are a number of types of train accidents, all of them hair-raising, including:
- Head-on collisions due to mistakes in scheduling or signaling
- Bumper (buffer stop) collisions when trains, due to miscalculation or speeding, crash through the bumpers at the end of the tracks
- Derailments resulting from damaged rails, dislodged objects, or engineer miscalculations
- Collisions with other structures, such as poorly designed, constructed or maintained bridges or tunnels
Any type of train accident is dangerous and may be fatal, to passengers who have no seat belts or airbags to prevent them from colliding with windows, seats, or other passengers and no protection from being hit by flying objects.
Causes of Train Accidents
If you have been severely harmed in a train accident, you have a right to know what went wrong. As your lawyers, we will use our considerable skills to accurately assign fault for your injuries so we can sue the appropriate party on your behalf and win you the damages you deserve.
We will pore over police reports, witness accounts, forensic evidence, railway records, and medical data in order to identify and target those responsible. We know that there are many possible reasons for train accidents, as listed below, and that in some cases these causes overlap.
Railroad Crossing Accidents
You may not be aware that over half of train accidents in the U.S. occur at railroad crossings where:
- Cars get stuck on the tracks
- Reckless drivers, bicyclists or pedestrians attempt to outpace crossing signals
- Crossing signals malfunction
Tragically, suicides are also a major cause of rail-related deaths in the United States.
Train and Track Malfunctions
Countless mechanical or electrical problems can cause train accidents. Such problems may be due to:
- Poor design of the train, tracks, or station, (e.g. too wide a gap between the train and the platform)
- Negligent maintenance: mechanical or electrical problems due to improper construction, failure to inspect, or delayed repair of the train, rails, or signals
- Miscommunication among railroad personnel
- Excessive cargo loads that create a hazardous imbalance
Driving a train requires a particular skillset and careful attention to detail. Therefore engineers may cause accidents due to:
- Incompetence or improper training
- Recklessness (i.e. speeding, failing to obey signals)
- Impairment by drugs or alcohol
- Fatigue or sleepiness
- Distraction (texting, phone calls, eating, conversation),
- Uncontrollable medical events (e.g. heart attack, seizure)
Factors such as bad weather can result in train accidents, as can obstructions on the tracks, flying or hurled objects that impact the train’s function. Even in situations in which there is no collision or derailment, train passengers can be seriously injured if the train is forced to stop abruptly.
Nagel Rice Will Fight Vigorously to Win the Damages You Deserve
When you have been incapacitated through no fault of your own by the negligence of another, the law entitles you to compensation for:
- Medical and rehabilitation costs
- Lost income, present and future
- Psychological counseling for PTSD or anxiety
- Property damage or loss
- Replacement services (e.g. housekeeping, childcare, pet care)
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent disability
- Extended nursing care
- Alterations to your home to make it accessible
- Permanent scarring or other disfigurements
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Depending on the circumstances, our highly accomplished train accident attorneys will create a well-crafted strategy designed to secure your future and the future of your family. If you have endured the anguish of losing a family member to wrongful death, we will fight hard to see to it that you receive compensation for final medical costs, funeral expenses, and, where applicable, loss of financial and emotional support.
In addition, if there is egregious fault underlying the cause of your accident, such as an impaired driver or a signal known to be malfunctioning that the railroad company neglected to repair, we may be able to win you punitive damages over and above other recompense.
Why You Need the Experienced Competence Nagel Rice Can Provide
Train accidents are more complicated than other vehicular accidents because they involve both state and federal law and because so many parties are apt to bear responsibility for your injuries — train operators, the train company, the operator of another involved vehicle. If you have been injured while working for the railroad, your coverage by the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) may add another tier of complexity.
Also, because of the law enacted in 1997 capping railroad accident liability at $200 million, you will need a consummate legal team to make sure you personally receive sufficient compensation. Two-hundred million dollars sounds like an enormous sum, but when you think of how many passengers that money may have to be distributed among, you realize that legal prowess is a necessity.
Contact Our Professional Train Accident Attorneys
We are concerned, above all, with your well-being and we have the strength and agility to provide you with outstanding legal advocacy. We know you need meaningful resources as well as time to recover from your physical and emotional trauma, and to carry you and your family through your temporary or permanent incapacity. You can trust Nagel Rice LLP to be at your side throughout your ordeal and to treat you with the respect and empathy you deserve.