Reiff & Bily is a personal injury law firm representing people who have been injured in Pennsylvania train accidents and railroad accidents. Our award-winning attorneys have provided the seriously injured with experienced and effective legal counsel since 1979. If you, your spouse, or a family member was hurt in an Amtrak train accident in the Philadelphia region, our personal injury lawyers may be able to recover financial compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, and other expenses resulting from the crash, collision, or derailment.
Philadelphia Amtrak Train Crash Lawyers Can Help
The railroad accident lawyers at Reiff & Bily have spent over three decades serving clients who have been injured in train crashes, including Amtrak accidents, SEPTA accidents, and other accidents involving commercial vehicles. We understand the complex state and federal laws that surround serious rail accidents, and use our knowledge and experience to craft aggressive, comprehensive strategies for settlement negotiation or litigation.
Reiff & Bily is proud to serve the communities we are part of. Based in Philadelphia, we provide legal representation for train injury victims in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster County, Lehigh County, and other areas of Pennsylvania. If you or someone you love has been recently injured in a Philadelphia train accident, or if a loved one was killed in a fatal Amtrak accident, do not hesitate to contact our law offices at (215) 274-0072 for a free legal consultation.
Train Accident and injury Statistics
Amtrak reports annual ridership of approximately 31.3 million, with about 85,700 passengers boarding each day. Annually, there are anywhere from approximately 10,000 to 15,000 train accidents in the United States. While train accidents are statistically rare, the high number of passengers often means that numerous injuries occur.
Train accidents can seriously injure or kill train operators, passengers riding the vehicle, and pedestrians, motorists, or cyclists who are in the crash area. When a collision occurs, passengers, operators, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists are all at risk for suffering an array of fatal injuries or catastrophic injuries, including:
- Amputation Injuries
- Back Injuries
- Broken Bones (Bone Fracture Injuries)
- Bruises (Contusions)
- Crush Injuries
- Cuts (Lacerations)
- Nerve Damage
- Organ Damage
- Second and Third Degree Burns
- Soft Tissue Injuries
- Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Whiplash and Neck Injuries
If the train was carrying hazardous substances at the time of the accident, there is also potential for toxic exposure injuries and chemical spill injuries, such as chemical burns or vision loss. Chemical injuries from freight train derailments can lead to serious health effects, potentially including:
- Birth Defects
- Eye Irritation
- Respiratory Problems
- Skin Irritation
Causes of train Derailments
According to the statistics available, many factors cause or contribute to train derailments and railroad collisions. Some examples of derailment and train crash causes include:
- Defective train parts
- Mechanical failure
- Improperly maintained tracks
- Lack of safety gates
- Malfunctioning lights or train signals
- Operator carelessness
- Operator fatigue
- Operator inexperience
- Operator intoxication
- Unprotected crossings
While these factors seem to vary, all share an underlying trait in common: all can be traced back to a human error. Whether the root cause of an Amtrak accident is train operator negligence, a defective product design, or malfunctioning safety systems, most crashes can be traced back to a mistake that was made by an Amtrak employee, an employee at a manufacturing company, or a product’s designer.
Moreover, many trains still operate with technology that is more than 50 years old and may not meet today’s safety requirements. Failure to update this technology needlessly places countless passengers, railroad workers, motorists, and pedestrians at risk of severe injury or death.
Specific laws govern your ability to recover compensation for injuries suffered in a train accident. Our personal injury law firm understands these laws, and knows how properly investigate and prove that a train operator, train company, railroad worker, or other party acted negligently in your case.
What to do if you were Injured in the Philadelphia Amtrak Derailment
On May 12, 2015, one of the worst train derailment accidents in recent U.S. history occurred. Shortly after 9:00 P.M., Amtrak Northeast Regional Train 188 completely derailed around Frankford Junction, located on the 2000 block of Wheatsheaf Lane in the Port Richmond section of Philadelphia. As of May 13, officials are reporting over 200 Amtrak accident injuries and at least seven fatalities. Our attorneys are here to offer legal support for the families and loved ones of Train 188 wrongful death victims. Among the survivors, at least six are currently listed as being in critical condition.
While the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is currently investigating the underlying causes of this terrible tragedy, the black box recovered from the wreckage has confirmed that Train 188 was speeding through Frankford Junction at speeds in excess of 100 MPH. Frankford Junction, which features a perilous curve, has a speed limit of just 50 MPH. The same junction was involved in another devastating derailment tragedy in 1943, which caused 79 deaths and an additional 117 injuries.
While black box data proves that Train 188 was traveling through the junction at dangerous speeds which were well above the posted limit, the underlying cause behind the train’s excessive speed has not yet been determined by the NTSB. The NTSB is still investigating whether the Pennsylvania Amtrak train crash is attributable to operator error, a malfunction of the train, or defects with the track itself.
We are keeping everyone who has been impacted by this abhorrent tragedy in our thoughts and prayers, and offer our condolences to the accident survivors and the loved ones of the victims who were killed in this terrible disaster. We will continue to post updates as more information is released by the NTSB and other officials investigating the accident.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a train accident or train derailment in Philadelphia, you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim, and may be able to recover financial compensation for medical bills, loss of wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. However, there is a statute of limitations that typically prohibits you from filing a claim after a certain period of time has passed.
Because of complex railroad industry regulations, liability laws, and legal deadlines, it is crucial that you have an Amtrak injury attorney who is skilled and experienced in representing train accident victims to help you navigate your accident claim or wrongful death claim. To discuss your claim confidentially in a free legal consultation with Reiff & Bily, contact us online using the confidential contact form above, or call our law offices at (215) 274-0072. We are here to offer help and support.