While not as common as car or truck crashes, train accidents are still surprisingly numerous. Data from the Federal Railroad Administration shows approximately 1,800 train crashes in 2013. Another 2,089 collisions were reported in the context of highway-rail incidents, which involve an impact between a rail and a highway user at a crossing site. The accident attorneys at Frankl Kominsky in West Palm Beach offer diligent representation to people hurt by such events. Our lawyers are seasoned litigators with experience handling complex Palm Beach County accident cases. We can assist you in trying to obtain fair compensation for your injuries.Causes of Train Crashes
Train accidents have been linked to a number of causes, including:
- Train derailment
- Excessive speeding
- Driver distraction, fatigue, or intoxication
- Inadequate track maintenance
- Mechanical malfunctions
The train industry must comply with many regulations for the safety of its passengers, employees, and the general public. These regulations include qualification and certification standards for engineers, strict compliance with hours of service requirements, and track and signal maintenance and inspection.Protect Your Rights by Pursuing a Lawsuit
Train accidents usually have more than one cause. An investigation will determine the causes of the collision and which parties may be responsible. Several areas of the law may intersect in train accident cases, including negligence and product liability.
If your claim is based on negligence, you must demonstrate that the defendant failed to exercise reasonable care and that this failure caused your injuries. You have the burden of establishing that the defendant had a duty to use reasonable care but breached this duty by its actions or omissions. You must also show a causal connection between the breach and your injury. For example, a train conductor may violate the duty of care if he or she speeds excessively and causes a derailment. If you are harmed as a result, you may be able to hold the conductor, and possibly his or her employer, liable for any objective or subjective damages related to the injury.
A train accident is sometimes caused by a mechanical failure or other malfunction. For example, a carrier is liable for its negligence if it failed to make necessary repairs on the train, and the failure caused the crash and your injuries. If the mechanical failure was due to a defective or malfunctioning component part, you may assert a claim against the manufacturer. In a product liability lawsuit, you can hold a manufacturer strictly liable if defects in the manufacturing or design process made a product unreasonably dangerous.
A train accident may have more than one contributing cause. If several parties are responsible for your injuries, you can hold each defendant liable to the extent of its fault. A Florida court will determine each party’s percentage of fault, including your own.
If you are found partially at fault for the accident, you can still get a reduced amount of damages. In some states, a plaintiff cannot recover damages if he or she contributed to his or her injuries. However, Florida will allow you to recover damages even if the accident is mostly attributed to your negligence, but only in proportion to the defendant’s degree of fault.
Compensation for your train accident injuries may extend to medical costs, property damage, lost income, pain and suffering, and other types of harm. If your relative died in a train crash, you can pursue a claim for wrongful death and possibly recover for their medical and burial costs as well as other damages based on your relationship.Discuss Your Injury Case With West Palm Beach Attorneys
At Frankl Kominsky, we can try to help assert your rights if you were hurt in a West Palm Beach train accident. Depending on your case our injury lawyers are available to try and aggressively pursue your claim against any at-fault parties. We would try to effectively negotiate a fair outcome through settlement, but we will pursue your claim in the courtroom if necessary. We represent victims of all types of injuries in Delray Beach, Boca Raton, and Lake Worth, in addition to the surrounding areas. Call us today at (561) 609-1948 or complete our online form to schedule an initial consultation at no cost. We speak Spanish and Creole.