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Sacramento Train Accident Lawyer

train

Train accidents are devastating and can often cause serious injuries or death. The size of the trains and the speeds most travel at often result in a greater impact during a collision. Being injured in an accident involving a train is bound to leave injured victims with catastrophic injuries and high medical expenses.

You may be entitled to compensation for your damages and losses if you have been injured while riding a train or hit by one in Sacramento. An experienced Sacramento train accident lawyer at AutoAccident.com can help you receive maximum compensation to cover your accident-related injuries. Call one of our injury attorneys at (916) 921-6400 for a free case evaluation.

Common Causes of Train Crossing Accidents

The U.S. Department of Transportation and volunteer organizations promote law enforcement efforts and public awareness regarding railroad crossing safety and proper behavior around railroad operations.  One cause of railroad crossing accidents is collisions between motor vehicles at or near a crossing and trains.  Vehicles can become stuck at crossings due to faulty signals or gates or sometimes due to driver confusion.

Another cause of collisions at train crossings is breaking failures on trains, and excessive speed, both of which can cause trains to approach crossings too fast and collide with other trains on the tracks.  In addition to collisions with other light rails and vehicles, trains speeding through railroad crossings or approaching crossings that lack proper gates and/or signals can cause pedestrians, passengers boarding and exiting the trains.  These accidents result in devastating injuries and fatalities.

Train Accident Statistics

Although the total number of deaths and injuries caused by railroad crossings has decreased in the past two decades, over 250 people are still killed annually, and more than 900 injured at railroad crossings.

Recent railroad crossing accidents in California have prompted federal lawmakers to introduce legislation to increase federal funding for railroad crossing improvements and re-routings. 

The Oxnard accident in California in February 2015 occurred at a location where a fatal accident had occurred the year before. In fact, five other accidents have happened at that same site since 2008.  The site combines a railroad crossing with a road intersection, and state and local leaders have called for an overpass to be built to avoid the hazards which have led to accidents over the years.

The short news clip below describes the train crash in Oxnard.

California's Applicable Law

According to California law concerning railway crossings, the following are applicable:

  • All school buses and most commercial vehicles, including those carrying hazardous or flammable materials, must come to a full stop at least 15 feet before crossing a railroad track.  It is considered a federal offense for trucking companies to instruct employees not to perform this required stop.
  • It is a misdemeanor for anyone to trespass on or close to railroad tracks or propels a vehicle along them.
  • No vehicle may park or come to a full stop on a railroad track or within seven and a half feet of a rail.
  • Motor vehicles can only cross a railroad if there is sufficient room on the other side of the tracks to allow the light rail to pass safely.
  • All vehicles must stop at the white limit line before crossing a railroad track.
  • Warning signs must be erected on the right-hand side of the road within a reasonable distance from the railroad crossing.
  • The speed limit is presumed to be 15 miles per hour within the 100 feet approaching the railroad crossing.

It is crucial that after an accident, an investigation determines whether any of these laws have been violated.  Failing to adhere to these sections of the California Code can result in liability for a train crossing accident.  Only an attorney experienced in railroad crossing accidents will gather the evidence necessary to recover the compensation an injured party needs and deserves.  

Accidents caused by violations of some of these code provisions can lead to a lawsuit against responsible government entities, as well as claims brought by multiple plaintiffs.  Being represented by an experienced Sacramento train accident lawyer that knows the law and can protect your rights is the best way to proceed after a railroad crossing accident.

Sacramento Train Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a train accident lawyer in Sacramento. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a train accident caused by negligence, call our injury lawyers now at 916.921.6400 or 800.404.5400 for free, friendly advice.

We are members of the National Association of Distinguished Counsel and the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.

See our client reviews on GoogleYelp, and Avvo and our past verdicts and settlements.

Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 6.1.21]

Photo by pixabay on pexels.com

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