Every 115 minutes, a person or vehicle is struck by a train somewhere in the United States. More alarmingly, over half of these collisions occur at railroad crossings that have inadequate automatic warning devices such as flashing lights and lowering gates, or lack them altogether. When railroad companies fail to follow proper safety procedures or to post adequate warnings at hazardous crossings, the results can be devastating. Thousands of Americans are killed or severely injured in rail-related mishaps each year, say train and railroad accident lawyers. Central Florida residents, visitors and workers arrive and depart the city daily via Amtrak and CSX rail systems. And the coming SunRail commuter rail system will put thousands more on the tracks daily beginning May 2014. As rail service grows, so too does the risk of train and railroad accidents, Orlando attorneys specializing in this complex legal field say. FELA: Safety versus Sufficiency As far back as 1908, legislators saw the need for federal protections for railroad workers and riders. That year, Congress passed the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) to provide a system of legal recovery for railroad workers and their families. The statute holds that liability is triggered “by reason of any defect or insufficiency, due to its negligence, in its cars, engines, appliances, machinery, track, roadbed, works, boats, wharves, or other equipment.” Also, under 45 U.S.C. § 51, railroad companies are required to provide sufficient equipment to accomplish any given task. These and other applicable laws can be used to help assure fair compensation if you or your dependents are injured in a train or railroad accident. Attorneys practicing this complex field of law are highly specialized, and those at Harrell and Harrell have secured multiple seven-figure verdicts and settlements for victims. Representing Cases of Personal Injury & Wrongful Death If you or a loved one were injured in train accident, Orlando personal injury and wrongful death attorneys with Harrell & Harrell provide aggressive representation of railroad workers, pedestrians and passengers in cases including: Rail Company Negligence Derailment Accidents Lack of Sufficiency Defective Signal Devices Poorly Maintained Railroad Tracks Dangerous Train Track Crossings Hazardous Material Spills Pedestrian Struck by Train Mechanical Defects & Malfunctions Vehicle/Train Collisions Train Conductor Error Lack of Safety Gates No doubt you’ve heard someone use the phrase, “hit me like a freight train” to describe a major illness or injury, or emotional blow – and with good reason. Freight and passenger trains are massive, powerful machines that have the potential to cause major property and personal injury, or even death. The resulting financial and emotional toll on a victim and his or her family can be devastating. Contacting an experienced courtroom trial attorney immediately is the best way to protect your legal interests and boost your chances of landing the highest possible recovery. Vehicle and Train Collisions One need not be riding a train to be a victim of a train accident. A collision of a freight or passenger train with a car or truck can cause life-altering injuries or death for a motor vehicle’s driver or passenger. Irreparable property damage, permanent disabilities or disfigurement and debilitating pain, not to mention potentially tens of thousands of dollars in medical treatment and physical rehabilitation, plus emotional strain can result. In the event of a collision, you can bet that the railroad’s insurance adjusters and investigators will be looking to limit their client’s liability with little or no consideration for your best interests. While it may be tempting to accept an early offer from an insurance carrier, be aware that these offers most likely will be significantly lower than the compensation that an experienced train and railroad accident attorney can help you secure. Let Harrell and Harrell help you recover full compensation for medical bills, lost wages, future earnings, pain and suffering, or death benefits. Contact or Orlando office today at 904-251-1111 or toll free 1-800-251-1111 for a free consultation. Don’t settle for less than you deserve.