Types and Causes of Train Accidents


According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration, 866 people died in railroad-related accidents in 2018. Of these fatal accidents 8 occurred on a train, 267 occurred at a railroad crossing, 562 involved trespassers, and 29 were simply categorized as “other.”

Commonly-reported accidents involving trains include:

  • Derailments
  • Train/train collisions
  • Train/motor vehicle collisions
  • Collisions at a railroad crossing

Common causes of accidents include:

  • Defective signals or gates
  • Trains that do not sound their horns or use their lights when approaching crossings
  • Crossings obstructed by trees and other objects
  • Negligent operation
  • Debris on the tracks
  • Defective warning systems, such as defective gates or signals

Liability for a Train Accident

Train accident cases are often very complex due in part because multiple parties may be at fault. They are also unique in that they can affect a wide range of people. An accident may involve only one injured person, such as when a person falls off a platform or is struck by a train, or it can affect dozens or even hundreds of people, such as when a derailment occurs.

Depending on the circumstances, injured parties could file a claim against:

  • Rail carriers
  • Railroad authorities
  • Commuter authorities
  • Operators
  • Third party companies responsible for maintenance and upkeep of the train or tracks
  • The manufacturer of a defective part

Contact a New York Train Accident Lawyer Today

The New York and Long Island train accident attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C., have the experience, skill, and resources necessary to help you if you were hurt in a train accident. Reach out to us today by calling (855) TOP-FIRM, by chatting with us live, or by filling out our free case evaluation form.

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Finz & Finz, P.C. is a New York and Long Island personal injury law firm based out of Mineola, NY. It was founded in 1984 and is highly rated, with many honors and awards of excellence.