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Receiving a diagnosis for illnesses or chronic conditions can be devastating. Not only will it impact your life, as you may not be able to partake in the activities you once enjoyed, but the medical attention required to treat the illness can be astronomically expensive. As a result, you may struggle financially. If you’ve worked on the railroad in the past and have reason to believe they are railroad-related illnesses, you may be entitled to compensation with the help of a railroad cancer lawyer. Keep reading to learn more about common conditions suffered by railroad workers and whether or not you can recover justice.

What Railroad-Related Illnesses Can Workers Suffer From?

Unfortunately, when working conditions are unsafe, or employers do not take the time to adequately train workers, employees can suffer several illnesses from their time spent working. As a result, railroad employers can suffer from the following diagnoses:

  • Cancers
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Lead poisoning
  • Scleroderma
  • Pulmonary fibrosis

It’s important to understand that there are several types of cancer diagnoses someone who worked on the railroad can receive. These include colon, kidney, bladder, lung, esophageal, and blood cancer, as well as, mesothelioma.

Are Workers Entitled to Compensation for Illnesses?

It’s important to understand that under the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA), employers can be held liable for illnesses their workers suffer because of employer negligence. Unlike workers’ compensation, FELA damages can only be awarded if the employer was at least partially responsible for the diagnosis.

For example, if an employer does not limit time spent around hazardous substances or provide the necessary personal protective equipment to prevent workers from inhaling carcinogenic materials like diesel fumes, asbestos, or silica dust, employees can become sick as a result.

Additionally, it is the responsibility of the employer to conduct site testing to ensure the environment is safe for workers. If they fail to do so or disregard the results to prioritize productivity and profits over safety, they may be held responsible.

If Diagnosed With an Illness From My Time on the Railroad, What Should I Do?

Whether you are currently employed by a railroad company or it has been years since your last shift, understanding your rights to pursue compensation for the illness you’ve suffered is critical.

Generally, under FELA, you have three years from the date the worker linked their illness with their occupational exposure to pursue compensation. This is imperative for those who may not have worked for the company in years, as it allows them the right to file a claim.

When you’ve received a life-altering diagnosis, the team at Doran & Murphy is here to help. We understand how complicated these matters can be, which is why we are dedicated to doing everything possible to help you recover the compensation you deserve. You can rest assured your case is in good hands so you can focus on managing your illness. Connect with our team today to learn how we will fight for you.