Train and Railroad Accidents

According to the Federal Railroad Administration, more than 13,000 railroad accidents occur each year.  Approximately 23% of those accidents involve train collisions with cars, approximately 17% involve train derailments, and 11% involve defective equipment, such as train track defects, and defective train tack switching equipment. 

In addition to collisions with cars, trains also collide with pedestrians or people on foot.  On average, a passenger or pedestrian is struck by a train every two hours.  Last year, there were more than 13,000 railroad-related accidents, in which nearly 1,000 were killed and nearly 9,000 people were injured due to: 

  • Human error or human factors (4991 accidents)
  • Defects in railroad tracks (4565 accidents);
  • Unknown or various factors (1673 accidents);
  • Equipment defects (1603 accidents); and
  • Signal defects (229 accidents).

There are many train tracks and train lines operating in upstate and Central New York, including: 

  • Ontrack;
  • CSX;
  • Amtrak;
  • Cayuga Railway Company;
  • Conrail;
  • New York Susquehanna & Western;
  • Adirondack Scenic Railroad;
  • Mohawk Adirondack & Northern;
  • Remsen;
  • Tioga Central Rail;
  • Meridian Southern Railway;
  • Luzerne Susquehanna Railway; and
  • Owego Harford Railroad.

Train and railroad accidents are very serious events because of the violent impacts and crush injuries that occur when trains collide with cars and pedestrians.  Injuries tend to be severe and include death, paralysis, paraplegia, quadriplegia, loss of limbs, nerve damage, fractures and lacerations. 

In the event of a severe personal injury, the injured individual and/or a spouse and immediate family members, may be entitled to recover for:

  • Wrongful death;
  • Past and future medical bills;
  • Past and future lost wages;
  • Loss of future earning capacity;
  • Pain and suffering;
  • Mental and emotional disability;
  • Disfigurement and scarring;
  • Loss of enjoyment of life;
  • Loss of society, love and affection;
  • Property loss; and
  • Incidental and out-of-pocket expenses.

While no dollar amount can adequately compensate for a loss, the legal system is structured to permit monetary recovery where the injured party can prove that another negligently caused his/her harm. The amount of recovery is determined either by a jury at trial, or through a fair settlement made prior to trial, that is based upon jury verdicts in similar cases. All claims that are accepted by the firm are actively researched and aggressively pursued to a conclusion.

If you or a loved one have suffered a severe personal injury, we may be able to help.  To contact the train and railroad accident attorneys at Bottar Law, PLLC, please complete a contact form or call us at (315) 422-3466 or (833) BOTTARS (268-8277).