Why You Should Hire an Experienced San Diego Train Accident Attorney
Train accidents in San Diego, CA, can be deadly. Victims who are lucky to survive often have to deal with the stark reality of prolonged recovery. The families of the people who pass on are saddled with the burden of figuring out how to survive. This is even worse if the deceased is the family’s breadwinner.
Train accident cases are unlike the typical personal injury cases — car accidents, for example. Train-related cases require the unique skills and knowledge of an experienced train accident lawyer. With the help of a legal team, the process of recovering compensation, though stressful, is more likely to be successful.
In California, the law recognizes trains as common carriers. Common carriers are transportation vehicles with a specific set of laws that apply to them. You need an experienced San Diego train accident attorney who is familiar with the recovery process for common carrier claims, has helped injured victims get their compensation, and can fight for you or your seriously injured loved one.
The personal injury law firm in San Diego that meets all these requirements is Harker Injury Law. Our train accident lawyers are experienced and absolutely committed to fighting for you. We are familiar with California’s common carrier laws, understand the process, and can help you pursue your claim until you get the compensation you deserve.
When it comes to our clients, our team of legal professionals is relentless and determined to help you secure a satisfactory outcome. If you or a loved one has been injured in a train accident and has suffered serious injuries, our personal injury attorneys can help you.
Don’t just consult with any personal injury law firm in San Diego — talk to a law firm that has your best interests at heart. If you’d like to speak to a train accident lawyer in San Diego, call 760.533.6979 today or fill out this form to have us call you back.
Types of Train Accidents in San Diego, CA
There are various types of train accidents in San Diego, CA. Understanding the differences between them is important if you want to win your case and get your financial compensation.
Some of the common train accidents include:
- Train-pedestrian accidents — According to the Federal Railroad Administration, San Diego County is one of the 10 most dangerous counties in the nation for train track deaths caused by accidents between trains and pedestrians.
- Train-train accidents — These are accidents between two trains, a train and a trolley, or even a train and tram.
- Train derailment — Also known as a lone-train accident, this occurs when a train veers off the track, slamming into objects or people in the way as the momentum decreases.
- Train-car accident — This occurs when a car is trapped within a railroad crossing and is unable to get off the tracks on time. In California, drivers are notorious for parking on a railroad crossing close to an intersection, while waiting for the red light to turn green. This is dangerous and often leads to train accidents.
The type of train accident, the circumstances surrounding the crash, and other factors play a role in determining who will be held liable in your case and how much you can pursue as compensation.
If you have been in a train crash in Southern California and are looking to recover compensation for injuries sustained, Harker Injury Law may be able to help. We provide effective legal representation services to people who have been hurt in train collisions.
Not only do we pursue your compensation if you’ve suffered serious injuries, but we can also file a wrongful death suit against liable parties if you lost a loved one to a railroad accident in California.
If you’d like to know what your chances are of recovering compensation if you file a claim, contact us today to schedule a free case evaluation.
Causes of Train Accidents
A crucial step in establishing your train accident case is finding out what caused the train crash or incident in the first place. This will help us determine who to sue or file a claim with — the MTA, state government, AMTRAK, Coaster, Sprinter, or other train companies.
The most common causes of train accidents in San Diego are as follows:
- Broken rails, welds, or other track problems — These may be responsible for about 29.4 percent of all derailments. All trains rely on the tracks being without any gaps to run smoothly. If there’s a sizable gap in the rails, the train will most likely be derailed, resulting in serious injuries and death to passengers and bystanders.
- Human negligence or errors — Human factors are responsible for 37 percent of train accidents and a significant number of derailments. Examples of errors include excessive speeding, poor handling of the automatic braking system, distracted driving, and failure to implement modern technology like the Positive Train Control.
- Rail trespassing and grade crossing — Trespassing and grade crossing may be responsible for 97 percent of rail crash deaths in the country.
- Mechanical Failures — These are usually caused by defective parts and can cause accidents in spite of the efforts of the rail transport company, the employees, and the operator’s carefulness.
- Inadequate warning signs at railroad or track crossings — Some rail track crossings lack visible warning signs or barriers. These warning signs would have ordinarily warned pedestrians or vehicle drivers, intending to cross, about the danger of their impending actions.
- Individuals not paying attention — Some people walk on or attempt to cross rail tracks without paying attention. These people may be on their phones, listening to music, or just so caught up in their own thoughts that they don’t realize that the train is near. When they realize, they may panic and try to scamper to safety. Unfortunately, some may not be able to make it in time.
- Inadequate safety measures — Most rail tracks have barriers like fences or walls meant to keep pedestrians and other cars away from the tracks. Unfortunately, some of the rails and trolley tracks have no barriers where they intersect with or run through the city — even though this is for practical reasons in many cases. These “street crossings” have led to a few train accidents in San Diego, CA.
- Poor judgment — Some drivers think they can make it through the rail tracks before the locomotive gets to them. Unfortunately, the drivers are sometimes wrong in their calculations, resulting in accidents on the rail track.
- Thrill-seeking beachgoers — Train tracks run near the beaches in Del Mar, where beachgoers often have to cross the tracks to get to the beach. The safety-conscious beachgoers stay clear of the tracks, while a few thrill-seekers wait until the last second to jump off the track. Sadly, not all make it out on time.
As with the average car accident case, identifying the cause of your railroad accident will help us determine who is liable. Once we identify the person(s) responsible for your injuries, we’ll then be able to pursue damages or file a personal injury lawsuit — depending on the case.
If you’d like to know more, our lawyers are available to answer all your questions. Call us today at 760.533.6979 for a free case evaluation.
What Damages Can You Recover in a San Diego Train Accident Case?
Every rail transport company has an obligation to keep its passengers safe while traveling. This is known as a Duty of Care. If a train company or its employees are found wanting in this regard, injured passengers or other victims may be able to pursue damages for the physical and emotional injuries they sustained in the accident.
You can seek damages for the following:
- Medical bills or expenses
- Lost wages and/or future earnings
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
- Property damages
If your relative or loved one passed away from the injuries sustained in the train accident, California state law gives you the right to file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit.
The damages you can pursue in a wrongful death claim or lawsuit include:
- Future earnings that the deceased would have earned if he or she was alive
- Burial and funeral expenses
- Loss of companionship and support
Please note that you can’t directly seek punitive damages, meant to punish the negligent party, in a wrongful death claim or lawsuit in California. What you can do, however, is seek punitive damages in a survival cause of action. This is a lawsuit or claim filed by a survivor on behalf of the deceased’s estate to recover the deceased’s losses — not the losses of the survivors.
As you can see, this is a pretty complicated process that requires the skills and knowledge of an experienced attorney. If you’d like to know more, call Harker Injury Law at 760.533.6979 to speak to a lawyer about this.
Find Out How a San Diego Train Accident Attorney Can Help You
The average train accident claim usually involves a few parties, some of which might be government agencies. Working on these claims by yourself without experience may be nearly impossible. To ensure you receive maximum compensation, hire a San Diego personal injury lawyer with experience in handling train crash cases to navigate the complex claims process for you.
At Harker Injury Law, our lawyers are experienced in seeking damages for victims of train accidents. Every attorney on our legal team is committed to helping you get the maximum compensation amount possible.
We treat every client as a member of the family and understand the devastation that this accident has brought upon you and your family. Our empathy for your situation motivates us to go all out for each client, to make sure that you get the compensation you deserve. Sometimes, it may even be possible to recover multiple times the amount initially offered.
The lawyers at Harker Injury Law are always on hand to take your calls or answer your questions at any time of day. If you’d like to speak to an experienced San Diego train accident attorney about your case, please get in touch with us.
Call us at 760.533.6979 or fill this form to schedule a call back with an attorney.