Traveling by train is one of the most common and efficient forms of commuting in and around the New York City area. Between the numerous subway lines, the Long Island Rail Road, the New Jersey Transit, the Metro-North Railroad, and Amtrak, there are hundreds of railroad workers who help to make these rail lines run as they should. However, due to the inherent danger of this job, many railroaders are injured in the act of repairing, maintaining, or overseeing the trains and rail lines.
When these accidents occur, transit workers typically experience serious disruptions to their lives. For instance, they may be physically affected to the point where they can no longer perform their jobs. Additionally, they may be affected financially, as workers’ compensation insurance can only help to an extent. Lastly, they may also suffer psychological effects of their accidents, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.
Fortunately for injured railroad workers, the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) is a federal law that protects railroaders and entitles them to compensation if they are injured while working. This protection applies to everyone who is employed by a railroad company that participates in interstate commerce. However, FELA only covers individuals who are actively fulfilling work-related duties at the time of the accident.
In addition, this statute mandates that New York railroad employers provide the following for their employers: a safe working environment, protection from harm by other employees, attentive supervision, safe equipment, and job training, if necessary. If any of these requirements go unfulfilled, resulting in an accident, the injured railroaders may be entitled to compensation from their employer. When pursuing compensation under FELA, New York train accident lawyers also must prove negligence on the part of the railroad company. Negligence refers to a failure to exercise the care that a reasonably sensible person would exercise in a similar circumstance.
If the case is successful, the injured railroad worker can recover compensation for the following damages:
- Lost wages (past, future, and insurance coverage)
- Medical costs (past and future treatment)
- Pain and suffering
- Mental distress
- Permanent injuries
- Scarring or disfigurement
The statue of limitations, or deadline, for taking legal action for railroad accidents is three years from the date of the accident. However, the sooner you contact our New York FELA lawyers, the sooner we can provide legal advice and investigate the accident. That being said, if you, a family member, or friend has been injured as a result of working on a railroad, please contact Hach & Rose, LLP, today.