Los Angeles Amtrak Train Accident Lawyer
The train accident attorneys at J&Y Law Firm are highly skilled and experienced in handling train crash cases, providing vital support to those who have suffered severe injuries or lost a loved one in a train accident due to negligence.
With a history spanning several decades, our firm has focused exclusively on representing injured individuals and the families of those who have tragically lost their lives due to railroad negligence. This dedication has earned our firm an unmatched reputation in the field. Our attorneys are committed to identifying all potential sources of compensation to ensure that train accident victims and their families receive the maximum recovery possible. This includes covering medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, as well as compensation for pain and suffering.
The law firm of J&Y handles train accident cases in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Orange County, San Bernardino County, San Francisco County, Sacramento County, and all of California.
Amtrak Train Crashes: A Persistent Safety Concern
The recent Amtrak train derailment in Port Costa, California, on March 21, 2023, where the train collided with a tree, highlights the concerning frequency of train derailments. Fortunately, no one was injured in this incident. However, it further intensifies the scrutiny of Amtrak’s safety record, which has already been under investigation following a series of fatal accidents. According to the Federal Transportation Department, there are approximately 1,700 derailments per year on average.
In December 2017, the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reported that a train was traveling at 80 mph (130 km/h) in a 30-mph (48 km/h) zone when it derailed. Speeding has been identified as a contributing factor in several recent Amtrak crashes, including the 2015 Philadelphia crash that resulted in eight fatalities.
NTSB Chairman Robert Sumwalt delivered a harsh critique of Amtrak’s safety culture in 2017, warning that a future accident was likely unless significant changes were made to the company’s safety management practices.
Congress had initially mandated the implementation of Positive Train Control (PTC) nationwide by the end of 2015, but later extended the deadline to the end of 2018. In 2015, the NTSB estimated that PTC could have prevented 145 train accidents, saved 300 lives, and avoided 6,700 injuries if it had been in place since 1969.
As of the second quarter of 2017, less than half of Amtrak’s 459 locomotives were equipped with PTC, according to the most recent data available from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). Two-thirds of Amtrak’s track segments and route miles had PTC in operation.
In comparison, countries like Germany, Britain, and France have had some form of automatic train control since the 1930s, as per the FRA. Furthermore, Japan has operated its bullet trains since 1964 without any passenger fatalities.
Addressing these safety concerns should lead to improvements that make railroads safer for both passengers and railroad workers. In the meantime, those who have suffered injuries in an Amtrak crash must act quickly to protect their rights.
According to the Federal Railroad Administration, there are about 3,000 train accidents that result in 1,000 injuries every year across the country. These accidents occur in a number of ways such as derailments, collisions with other trains or vehicles, or at unprotected railroad crossings. Common reasons for train accidents include:
- Conductor error
- Railway negligence
- Mechanical failure
- Objects on the tracks
- Inspection and maintenance violations
Train Accident Injuries
Because trains travel at high rates of speed without providing special protection for passengers, train accidents can result in serious injuries and even death. Similarly, passengers can be injured while boarding or leaving the train if there is a gap between the train and the platform or if there are any other hazardous conditions. In addition, bystanders, including pedestrians and occupants of motor vehicles, can be injured at unprotected railroad crossings, if warning signals and gates fail to operate properly, or in derailments and cargo spills.
A train is considered a common carrier, or one that transports members of the public for a fee. As common carriers, railroad companies and commuter rail lines have a higher responsibility to safely transport the public by taking all necessary safety precautions to avoid an accident. A railway operator can be negligent if a crossing arm is not working, a warning signal fails to sound an alarm, or if the train engineer or conductor misses a signal or exceeds the speed limit. In California, common carriers such as Amtrak, Caltrain, and MetroLink can be held legally responsible for failing to use the highest degree of care to avoid causing harm to passengers.
How the Law Firm of J&Y Handles Train Accident Claims
At the law firm of J&Y, we know that train accident victims will be faced with the possibility of long-lasting physical, emotional, and financial burdens. Our experienced attorneys will engage in intricate and detailed negotiations with the insurance company to help you obtain the compensation that you deserve for your medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.
The Cost of a Train Accident Attorney
J&Y Law Firm’s Amtrak train accident and Metrolink train crash attorneys will represent you on a contingency basis, meaning you pay nothing until your case is resolved.
It is crucial to contact a train accident attorney as soon as possible. Railroads employ teams of attorneys and claims personnel to protect their interests, so you need someone on your side to defend your rights and advocate for you. The laws governing Amtrak train accidents and Metrolink train crashes are highly complex, as Amtrak is a government entity.
If the insurer fails to offer a fair settlement, we will litigate your accident case in court. If you or a loved one was injured in a train accident in California, call our office today at (888) 806-6722 for a free evaluation of your case.