With the emergence of online shopping and overnight deliveries, it’s easy to forget how essential railroads are to supporting the nation. Without railroads and the employees hired to upkeep and maintain them, the nation’s economy would spiral, as massive industries like agriculture and manufacturing would not receive their materials. However, railroad employees encounter common dangers and hazards every day. Familiarizing yourself with risks is essential to staying safe and understanding whether or not your employer is liable for the injuries you sustained. Keep reading to learn about common dangers and discover how a FELA lawyer can help you recover compensation.
What Common Dangers Affect Railroad Employees?
One of the most common dangers that railroad employees face is exposure to harmful and toxic substances. There are many materials that are transported across railroad tracks, and as a result, there are strict standards on how to handle these substances. If these regulations are not enforced, it can lead to severe injury and illness. Exposure to these substances can lead to cancer, lung disease, or poisoning.
Unfortunately, when team members are not properly trained, it can increase the risk of injury. For example, employers who fail to comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) standards are at an increased risk of injury. This includes failure to train employees on the proper way to handle equipment, failure to use signage to alert employees to danger, or forcing employees to work on railcars that lack proper safety features. These risks can result in broken bones, disfigurement, loss of limbs, internal organ damage, and in some cases, wrongful death.
What Should I Do if I’m Injured?
Immediately upon injury, you should inform your manager. Do not try to take any responsibility for the accident, such as apologizing, and try to keep your statement short and factual. This prevents anyone from twisting your words or casting doubt on what happened.
You should also request assistance from a union representative and get in contact with an attorney immediately. However, you should not rely on the nearest personal injury attorney; you’ll need someone familiar with the ins and outs of FELA. You should not sign any papers or give a statement to the railroad’s claims department until you have spoken to legal counsel.
You must seek medical attention for any injuries you’ve sustained while on the job. You should be thorough and explain the extent of any pain or discomfort you’re experiencing with the medical professional.
When you’re hurt on the job, Doran & Murphy can help. Our experienced legal team will carefully review your case to help determine the best course of action. Contact us today to connect with a competent attorney to discuss the details of your injury.