When you board a train, you are placing a large amount of trust in the train operator. While traveling by train is very safe overall, there are occasionally train derailments and other incidents that can cause an injury. If you are injured on a train, you might wonder what steps you may take to seek compensation for your injuries. After all, there's no reason to be forced to pay for injuries that you were not responsible for.
Causes for Catastrophic Train Accidents
There are many problems that can lead to a train accident as a result of negligence. For example, the authorities might have failed to install a positive train control system. Also, even if the positive train control system was installed, it might not have been turned on. When this system is not in place, the train operator might drive faster than the speed limit of the train.
Speeding is one of the most common reasons why trains derail. They can also derail as a result of improper operation of the train or navigation mistakes. If a mistake made by a conductor is the cause of the accident, you'll want to pursue litigation against the train company and possibly the conductor himself.
Statute of Limitations for Train Accidents
You must bring a claim against the train company as soon as possible. In some states, you may only have a few years before the statute of limitations runs out. Also, you will need to seek medical treatment promptly. If you are injured but fail to seek medical treatment, this might be used as evidence that your injuries must not have been very severe. Then, you may receive partial compensation or no compensation at all.
The Pretrial Discovery Process
Train companies are insured. When you are involved in an accident, it will typically involve several other parties, and you may be able to pursue a class-action lawsuit with other passengers. With the help of a personal injury attorney, you will file a complaint. Then, the train company and the insurance provider will respond to the complaint, usually with a rebuttal.
Next, you will enter the discovery phase. This is when you and the insurance provider exchange evidence and have several pretrial hearings. These pretrial hearings focus on motions and arguments. Then, you can go to trial and the verdict will be determined by a judge or a jury of your peers.
To learn more, contact a personal injury attorney.Share