One of the worst accidents one can figure in is a train accident. Since trains have speeds over regular cars or trucks plus since they only operate on train tracks, they cannot change their direction to divert the train away from victims.
As such, the injuries can be life-threatening, or worse, fatal. This post will provide you with a comprehensive guide on what you should know about train accidents and the law that governs these traumatic events.
What Are Train Accidents?
Train accidents are one of the most severe forms of road accidents. They occur in train stations, subways, railroad crossing, or any area where the offending vehicle runs on a railway system. Since these vehicles cannot shift their direction while in transit and only move forward and backward, accidents are often hard to prove as the train driver’s fault. In such cases, victims of train accidents should work with a competent attorney to represent their cause.
What Are the Different Types of Train Accidents?
The government is aware of the different safety issues of train operations. Over the decades, legislators and engineers have created a strict code of operations that train operators must adhere to.
Whether it is a freight train or a passenger train, the driver and the crew must ensure compliance to prevent these types of train accidents:
Operational Train Accidents
These accidents are those that occur due to the negligence of a train operator. They are often due to engineers and other crews’ failure to guide the train, alert operators of rail traffic, and rout the communications.
There are cases where the train crews could also fail to check the railway system to ensure pedestrians’ safety and other drivers on the road where the train would pass by.
Some mechanical train accidents can occur due to unchecked machines with defective parts. Each train must pass inspections and undergo routine maintenance before they even travel. Employees in charge of the maintenance of the trains and the train tracks must do so following the guidelines set by the Department of Transportation (DOT).
Drivers who show negligence or inadequate knowledge of train operation can cause functional train accidents. Train operators must ensure that all train drivers would have the necessary training that would allow them to operate the train safely, including quick decision-making skills to prevent potential accidents while in transit.
External Train Accidents
External train accidents are unavoidable in nature and are way beyond the train company’s responsibility. For example, accidents happening despite the good condition of the train, mechanics, and rail tracks.
It would be pretty typical for law enforcement officers to attribute the accident to an apparent reason. Examples of such accidents are vehicles and pedestrians ignoring railroad crossing warnings or illegal entry into the train path.
What Can Result from Train Accidents
As mentioned, train accidents can result in severe injuries, which could further result in lost wages, extended hospital stay, and sky-high medical bills.
Sometimes, these accidents can result in death. For this reason, train accidents must be further investigated to understand the primary cause. Train accidents can also result in collateral damage because it can also cause injuries and damages even for people who were not even on the train.
All trains, whether they be freight or passenger, must ensure to undergo proper checks before beginning their journey. Each driver must have the appropriate training, discipline, and skills to react accordingly in case of an unfortunate event, ensuring the safety of lives, whether on the train or not.
Operating a train without proper knowledge is a disaster waiting to happen.