Columbus Railroad Worker Accident Lawyers
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the fatality rate for railroad workers is double the fatality rate of all other work-related deaths. Despite hazardous situations, by law, railroad workers are entitled to a safe workplace and it is the employers’ responsibility to provide it. However, railroad workers across the United States are continuing to see less enforcement of safety laws by the government agencies who are employed to enforce these laws. Administrations continue to strip enforcement capabilities of these agencies. Across the nation, there is a reluctance of national media to shine any light on railroad workers’ fatalities and injuries and the overwhelming lack of enforcement of safety regulations.
Rail-related occupations are some of the most dangerous jobs in the nation, especially for railroad brake, signal, and switch operators. Railway workers regularly suffer serious injuries while on the job, and often develop occupational diseases from exposure to dangerous chemicals and materials. Railroad workers can be seriously injured in several capacities of their position, including on the railway yard, on the tracks, or on the train itself. Some of the top causes of injuries on the railroad are falls, hearing damage, collision, and overexertion. Common injuries on the railroad include: brain injuries, broken bones, crush injuries, spinal cord injuries, amputation, burns, or wrongful death. Aside from this, railroad workers are also susceptible to illnesses due to toxic chemicals around the workplace such as lead, asbestos, benzene, or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
In 1908, the United States government recognized the hazardous situations that railroad workers are subjected to, so the government created the Federal Employers Liability Act as a way to compensate railroad workers for their injuries more thoroughly than normal workers’ compensation would call for. The United States government determined that this separate entity should be created due to the shockingly large amount of injuries and deaths sustained by working on railroads, and it was decided that the burden of these injuries should be passed onto the railroad companies.
The main differences between FELA and normal workers’ compensation is that FELA is a tort-based system. Damages awarded under FELA are often much higher in value, and negligence by the employer must be proved; however, it is not required to prove that the employer was entirely to blame, but only partially to blame.
For employees of rail companies, the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) states that trail and railroad workers have the right to pursue compensation from their employers when they are placed in unsafe working conditions that cause injury or death. Under this act, any rail worker can hold their employer liable for unsafe working conditions, faulty equipment, defective safety devices, lack of safety inspections, inadequate training, or lack of enforcement of safety rules. Due to the unique requirements that apply to railroad cases involving FELA, legal representation from a skilled attorney is extremely important for an injured railroad worker.
If you or a family member has been injured while working for a railroad, call the Columbus railroad worker accident lawyers with Rinehardt Law Firm at (419) 529-2020 and let us fight for you.
Rinehardt Law Firm is the answer to your personal injury. Our team of attorneys and case managers have represented clients in in Columbus and throughout central and north central Ohio for years. We treat every new client as if they were part of our family by providing clear communication, building a strong relationship, and using our experience to provide legal guidance that’s in their best interests. We offer free consultations with no obligation, so don’t hesitate to contact our team about your legal matter.