Exposure to diesel and exhaust fumes has long been linked to lung cancer, but the American Cancer Society reports that diesel fumes may also lead to leukemia and cancer of the bladder, pancreas, larynx, esophagus, and stomach. Ever since dieselization of railway locomotives, railroad workers have been suffering the effects of exposure to diesel exhaust and diesel fumes. In most cases, the harmful effects build up over time so workers may not realize that their diesel exposure on the job caused cancer or another debilitating illness. A New York railroad diesel and exhaust fumes lawyer can help those suffering from illnesses caused by diesel exhaust. Under the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA), railroad workers can receive compensation if they can make the required showing of negligence, and a personal injury lawyer could help a worker establish liability and claim a fair recovery under FELA.
Damages Available Under FELA for Diesel Exhaust Exposure
Railroad employees suffering from lung cancer or other forms of cancer caused by exposure to dangerous substances in the workplace may be entitled to receive compensation to make up for different consequences resulting from their injuries. This compensation is frequently referred to as damages.
A New York railroad diesel fumes lawyer could help a worker recover damages to offset economic losses such as medical bills. In addition, an attorney could help a railroad worker receive compensation for intangible but very real effects such as pain. Damages available for workers injured by diesel fumes could include amounts to cover:
- Emotional anguish
- Doctor and hospital bills
- Lost wages due to time missed from work
- Pain and suffering
- Future medical expenses
- Reduced future income
- Loss of enjoyment of life or favorite activities
An attorney could calculate a fair value for each of these aspects of a case to determine a reasonable amount of recovery based on legal precedent. Damages for each of these factors may be received even if a case settles before trial.
How Can Railroad Workers Seek Compensation for Diesel Exhaust Exposure?
While railroad employees suffering due to exposure to diesel exhaust are not required to work with a New York railroad diesel fumes lawyer to seek recovery under the FELA, many choose to take advantage of the experience provided by a seasoned legal advocate who understands the unique requirements in this area of law. The process of recovering compensation for on the job illnesses and injuries differs for railroad workers compared with most other workers in New York.
What is Needed to Prove Negligence?
While employees in other industries may file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits and do not need to demonstrate any wrongdoing on the part of their employer, those who work in the railroad industry cannot file for workers’ compensation benefits but must file a claim or lawsuit under the FELA. To recover compensation, a railroad worker must present evidence to show that the employer failed to fulfill a duty to protect them from harm and that this failure or negligence caused the cancer or other harmful condition suffered.
In order to show that the railroad company’s negligence caused the harm complained of, an attorney may use expert witnesses and evidence collected after extensive investigation. Although more work is required to recover under FELA than through workers’ compensation, an injured railroad employee may receive substantially more damages than a worker making a claim through workers’ compensation.
Consult a Knowledgeable New York Railroad Diesel and Exhaust Fumes Lawyer
Many different railroad jobs expose workers to diesel fumes on a regular basis. Engineers inhale diesel exhaust that leaks from the exhaust system or through doors and windows. Shopworkers are frequently surrounded by diesel exhaust, particularly when running repairs are in progress. Maintenance of way workers inhale fumes from locomotives and other diesel machinery. With diesel engines so prevalent in the railroad industry, the potential for workers to develop cancer or other potentially fatal illnesses is great.
If you are suffering harmful effects from exposure to diesel exhaust on the job, it is a good idea to consult a New York railroad diesel and exhaust fumes lawyer who can evaluate your case and explain your options. For a free consultation, call now.