Railroad accidents are more common than you might expect. The United States Department of Transportation reports that there are nearly 5,800 train crashes involving motor vehicles every year. The majority of these incidents happen at railroad intersections. A railroad crossing accident is said to occur every 90 minutes and result in 1,000 deaths per year. Unfortunately, these numbers are increasing.
The most common misconception is that a train can and will stop if it sees something in its direct path. This is untrue. What people don’t know is that they are supposed to yield to an oncoming train. If the lights and bar at the crossing are active, be patient and stop. Many times victims think they can speed through the crossing before the bars are fully extended. In other situations, the warning lights and bars are not properly functioning. Both scenarios too often result in tragedy. Exercise caution at crossings regardless of alerts or warnings.
There are several types of scenarios that occur. Train to car is the most common type of railroad accident. The second is a train to person collision. A train can derail off the tracks and cause damage to nearby people or property. Trains can also derail and collide with another train. If it is a passenger train, more serious injuries can occur. Derailment happens in both urban and rural areas. Both of these can cause significant bodily harm and damage to property.
If you or a loved one have been injured, or died as a result of a railroad accident, it is a very difficult time. Is it important to talk with an experienced attorney for advice on receiving well-deserved compensation for damages and losses.