Just because conductors spend more time in train cabs than other railroad workers does not mean they are immune from job-related accidents. In addition to the many different types of workplace accidents that could waylay a conductor for weeks or even months, railroad work is also correlated with numerous chronic conditions and work-related diseases – like cancer – that may not become evident until long after a worker retires. Fortunately, the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) allows railroad workers to hold their employers liable for on-the-job injuries and work-related diseases under certain circumstances. However, you may struggle to prove those circumstances effectively without help from a seasoned railroad injury lawyer. If you want to maximize your chances of a favorable claim resolution, retaining a New York conductor injury lawyer is almost always a good idea.
What Type of Injuries Can a Conductor Sustain While Working On The Railroad?
Generally speaking, railroad conductors most commonly suffer workplace injuries in one of three ways: sudden accidents with heavy machinery, damage from repetitive stress, and chronic illnesses from exposure to toxic substances. All three of these situations could give rise to a FELA claim that a qualified New York conductor injury attorney could help you make the most of.
Like any other railroad worker, conductors are susceptible to severe injuries due to collisions and equipment malfunctions, including broken bones, lacerations, loss of limb, and permanent brain or spine damage. In addition, repetitive movements in high-intensity work environments can wear down joints and ligaments, often resulting in chronic pain and loss of mobility in the long run.
One of the most dangerous impacts that railroad work can have on conductors is the risk of illness, like cancer, from exposure to any number of dangerous chemicals and substances. Asbestos, chemical fumes, exhaust from diesel engines, and silica dust from sanders used in braking mechanisms can all contribute to cancer and other serious medical problems that may be expensive to treat as well as dramatically decrease a conductor’s long-term quality of care.
How Do FELA Claims Differ from Workers’ Compensation?
Under the Federal Employers Liability Act, railroad employers owe a duty of care to protect their workers from dangerous work and take numerous measures to ensure their safety on the job. An injured conductor has to prove that their employer negligently failed to fulfill this duty of care in some way. A conductor accident lawyer in New York could help pursue compensation for their damages through a FELA claim.
This requirement to prove negligence by an employer is a crucial difference between FELA claims and workers’ compensation claims, and it is one that trips up many railroad workers who try to file these claims without professional legal assistance. On the other hand, another way that FELA coverage and workers’ compensation insurance differ is the types of losses they cover—unlike workers’ comp, FELA claims can provide money for both economic and non-economic damages, including lost work wages, medical bills, physical pain, and emotional anguish.
Get in Touch with a New York Conductor Injury Attorney Today
Just like any other railroad worker, conductors can and do suffer serious harm from workplace accidents, chronic physical and mental stress, and exposure to a variety of dangerous chemicals. Also, like other railroad workers, conductors must go through the same FELA claims process to recover compensation for the harm they suffer while working. Trying to do that without help from legal counsel can often be a recipe for disaster. Seeking guidance and support from a qualified New York conductor injury lawyer could put you on the right track toward recovering thoroughly for any injury, disease or loss your railroad work leaves you with. Call today to learn more about your possible legal options.