Who is Liable for a Train Accident in New Jersey?

According to the Federal Railroad Administration Office of Safety Analysis, 27 people were killed in train accidents in New Jersey in 2010. That represents a slight increase from the 25 people killed in New Jersey train crashes in 2009. While these numbers include suicides, they also represent accidents that may have been caused by railroad companies, operators, car drivers, and mechanical failures. In these cases, it is very important to determine fault in order to ascertain who should be held liable for the damages suffered by innocent victims.

Some train accidents result from operator negligence. Train operators who fall asleep at the wheel, speed, or drive distracted may put everyone on the train and near the train tracks in danger. In such cases, the train operator and the transit authority that hired the negligent worker may be held liable for the damages suffered in a train crash.

Other New Jersey train accidents may involve a failure to provide adequate traffic warning devices. When a crash occurs at a railroad crossing, it must be determined if the warning lights were working, if the crossing gate was down, and if the warning bells sounded. Depending upon the location, the governing body or the railroad company responsible for maintenance may be held liable if a train crash results.

Injured victims of train accidents and their families would be well-advised to seek legal guidance from a skilled personal injury attorney in Princeton. The lawyers at Lependorf & Silverstein have a long history of helping injured victims in New Jersey receive the compensation they need from negligent parties. Please contact our law offices at 609-240-0040 to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights if you have been injured due to another’s negligence.