Nearly 8,000 traffic accidents happen along railways in the United States every year. Sadly, according to the Federal Railroad Administration, car-train incidents resulted in over 500 fatalities and 6,000 injuries. The majority of these collisions happened at highway-rail grade crossings when the road crosses the rails on the same level as the tracks. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a minor mishap when it comes to car-train collisions. Needless to say, these crashes may have terrible effects on drivers, passengers, and their families.
What Makes Railroad Accidents Catastrophic?
Due to the size, weight, and speed of railroad carriages, train accidents are exceptionally dangerous and often deadly. It is difficult to take steps to limit the harm after such an accident has occurred. Moreover, automobile passengers and spectators have minimal protection because car safety equipment designed for vehicle accidents cannot withstand the impact of a moving train. Experts equate the force generated by a 30-car train colliding with a passenger vehicle to the force generated by a car colliding with an aluminum soda can.
Aside from the tremendous force created by trains, railroads in the United States are frequent routes for the transfer of significant volumes of hazardous material. When there is an accident, this cargo might pour out and endanger everyone close by. While these instances are uncommon, the repercussions are severe, and the injuries inflicted may influence accident victims for the rest of their lives.
Common Reasons for Train Crashes
These hazardous mishaps happen for a number of reasons, but there are a few more prevalent causes to be aware of:
- Faulty safety equipment. Faulty equipment at the road crossing might include flashing lights, warning noises, or a mechanical arm that isn’t working.
- Lack of safety equipment. Some crossings are completely devoid of lights, warning noises, a mechanical arm, or other safety elements.
- Conductor negligence. In many circumstances, the train operator fails to fulfill their duties adequately, whether due to intoxication, exhaustion, or other factors.
- Derailment. When a train derails, it may result in catastrophic consequences. A train, due to its large size and rapid speeds, may cause ruinous harm to persons and property in its path.
- Mechanical failure. Many accidents occur as a consequence of a breakdown of the train’s mechanical or electrical systems, such as brake faults, axle problems, and other issues.
Why You Need a Train Accident Attorney
It goes without saying that a railway accident may be terrible for everyone concerned. Unfortunately, victims of such incidents sometimes have life-threatening injuries or die as a consequence of their injuries. However, if you were hurt or lost a loved one in a train accident, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit. Contacting a train accident lawyer in Kansas City right now might be the difference in obtaining the justice you deserve. If a railway accident has had a substantial and tragic effect on your life, you should immediately contact an attorney.