Trains are a common sight in Texas. Many railroad freight carriers operate in the state of Texas. Passenger carriers include:
- Intercity passenger rail (Amtrak)
- Commuter rail (A-train, Capital MetroRail, Trinity Railway Express, and TEXRail)
- Light rail (DART Rail, Houston METRORail)
- Tourism rail (Austin and Texas Central Railroad, Six Flags & Texas Railroad, Historic Jefferson Railway, Grapevine Vintage Railroad, Texas State Railroad, and Longhorn and Western Railroad)
- Trolley and streetcar (Dallas streetcar -- DART, El Paso street car – Sun Metro, McKinney Avenue Trolley, Galveston Island Trolley)
Texas Central is a private railroad company. It provides transportation to nearly 100,000 commuters that travel between Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth more than once a week, as stated by Texas Central. The company is proposing a high-speed rail line 240 miles long between these locations. It plans to offer frequent departures, with a total travel time of less than 90 minutes.
Defective or broken rails are a major cause of train derailment. This type of collision can also occur when tracks are buckled. Other causes of derailment involving train equipment failure may include improperly functioning brakes, axle defects, bearing defects, broken car wheels, electrical defects, or car suspension failure.
If derailment is caused by mechanical issues with the train, the train owner may be responsible for accidents and injuries. When the track itself caused the crash, the entity that owns or runs the track may be liable. Our Dallas train injury attorneys can investigate the accident to determine fault and liability.
When a train has a collision, different people can be injured. Potential victims of train accidents include railroad workers, train passengers, other motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians. In a recent year, there were 1,329 train derailments in the U.S., as reported by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). Altogether, three people were killed and 57 were injured in train accidents that year.
Derailments can lead to catastrophic injuries and fatalities. Trains travel fast and fail to offer protections such as seat belts for passengers. When a train derails, passengers may be thrown around inside a car or ejected from the car. Blunt force trauma can lead to serious injuries or wrongful death.
When someone is killed in a train accident, surviving family members may be entitled to file a wrongful death claim to seek justice for their loved one and to hold responsible parties accountable. A wrongful death claim is a type of civil lawsuit that allows survivors to seek compensation for their losses related to the death. Our Dallas wrongful death attorneys have the knowledge, skills, and resources to effectively pursue compensation. In Texas, damages recoverable for wrongful death include:
- Medical expenses incurred by the deceased related to the final injury
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Value of the lost wages, lost benefits, and loss of earning capacity of the deceased
- Value of emotional anguish, loss of comfort and care, loss of consortium, and pain and suffering
- Punitive damages, when death was caused by the willful act or omission or gross negligence of the defendant
The surviving spouse, children, or parents of the deceased can file a wrongful death claim in Texas. One of these surviving family members can bring a claim for the benefit of all. If none of the family bring a wrongful death action, the executor or administrator of the deceased person’s estate has the right to bring a wrongful death claim.
If you have lost a loved one in a train derailment or other train accident, call a Dallas personal injury lawyer at The Lenahan Law Firm at (214) 295-1008. We are compassionate, effective advocates for wrongful death victims.