When train accidents occur, the resulting damage can be immense and horrific. The size and speed of trains brings death and destruction to anyone in their path. The main forms of train accidents
are train derailments, train and pedestrian accidents, and train and car accidents.
Statistically, a train derails about every ninety minutes in the US. This is because railroads are effectively self-regulated and few attempts have been made by the federal government to examine or improve on their safety performance. Rail companies tend to rely on old technology developed decades ago, and few measures have been made to improve safety. While relatively few people are killed in these accidents, train derailments cause damage to property, and in some cases the environment. A train carrying hazardous materials derails about every two weeks. Sometimes these situations are so serious that local residents need to be evacuated.
Pedestrian-Related Train Accidents
Being near a train either at a station, a crossing, or just the tracks themselves is always a hazardous activity for a pedestrian. Approximately three hundred people die in train-related accidents
in the US each year. A good number of these deaths are considered suicides, but many of these deaths are not by design. Hitching a ride on a moving train is a dangerous activity practiced by many, sometimes resulting in grievous injuries and death. Sometimes a pedestrian will fall into the path of a train and be unable to get out of the way before the train passes.
Car-Related Train Accidents
Railroad crossings are a dangerous place for motorists if not approached with the proper caution. There are about 5,800 car-related train accidents
each year in the US and the majority of these occur at railroad crossings. It is important to be patient at a railroad crossing and don’t push your luck when the crossing lights go off. Don’t assume a train conductor will see you or be able to stop if you get stuck on the tracks. A 150-car freight train traveling at fifty miles an hour takes more than a mile to stop.
Another common form of car/train accident occurs when the car driver is unable to see the train and runs into it. This happens most often at night and at crossings with inadequate warning devices. According to some studies, 80% of railroad crossings in the US do not have adequate warning devices.
What to do after an injury or fatality Train Accident
Since train accidents often result in serious or fatal injuries, it is crucial to find an experienced train accident attorney who understands how to help victims get compensated for their injuries and financial damages. Train accident claims are complicated and need to assistance of a train crash lawyer
to oversee the insurance claim that will begin the process of recovery for victims and their families.