Many people in Maryland and the surrounding area use public transit for daily commuting and occasional travel. While transit may appear to be a safe form of transportation, accidents involving Maryland trains or tracks can result in disastrous consequences. A Washington Post poll indicated that nearly 20% of Maryland area residents use transit to get to work, and almost 90% use Metrorail occasionally. As the country continues to see improvements in overall health and safety, there will likely be an increase in public transit. While some legislators are concerned with improving roads, it is equally essential to consider transit.
What Are the Leading Causes of Train Accidents?
Although train accidents are not common, they tend to result in severe injuries and property damage when they do occur. A significant number of train accidents happen because of:
- Unmarked railroad crossings
- Stalled vehicles on or around the track
- Train operator or crew impairment
- Mechanical failures
- Defective tracks
Many factors may make these cases challenging, such as when there is a fatality or multiple and unknown causes for the accident.
For instance, recent news reports confirmed the death of a driver in an Amtrak accident. The train spokesperson explained that the driver’s vehicle was obstructing the tracks with his truck when the collision occurred. A transit authority representative explained the importance of being attentive at rail crossings, reporting that nearly 2,000 people suffer injuries or fatalities in grade crossing and trespassing incidents. While the train and track company has made statements regarding fault, the case is still under investigation.
Train accident lawsuits may also stem from injuries to passengers onboard. While Maryland law permits individuals to sue the Maryland Transit Administration, these cases require a thorough understanding and compliance with strict federal and state laws. These cases often fall under the governmental immunity laws, which present enormous hurdles to accident victims. An attorney is critical to successful recovery in these cases. Further, if an accident occurs because of a defective train track, an accident victim may claim against the company that manufactured the dangerous part. These cases may encompass various theories under Maryland’s product liability statute.
Regardless of the originating cause of the accident, wrongful death and personal injury laws require the claimant to establish the full extent of their damages. Establishing losses requires the victim to present evidence of the damages. An attorney can represent a trained injury victim by collecting and presenting all necessary evidence.
Have You Suffered Injuries in a Maryland Train or Truck Accident?
If you or someone you love has suffered severe injuries or died in a Maryland train accident, contact the experienced lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen. The attorneys at our office treat every client with respect and represent them with integrity and zealous advocacy. We handle Maryland accident cases stemming from governmental negligence, slip and falls, premises liability, truck accidents, medical malpractice, recreational park injuries, nursing home negligence and more. Our attorneys take the time to answer our clients’ questions and make sure that they recover the damages the law entitles them. Contact our office at 800-654-1949 to schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney on our team.