If you’ve suffered a railroad injury in New Jersey, you’ll want to know the facts about railyard injuries and railyard safety conditions provided by the accident attorneys at Cahill Goetsch & Perry, P.C.
All railroad workers are protected against negligent employers by Federal Employers' Liability Act (FELA). FELA was enacted by Congress in 1908. It is a system whereby injured railyard workers could obtain legal compensation. It also established a standard for safe working conditions. Even in New Jersey under FELA, railroad companies are required to:
- Provide safe working conditions for their workers whose occupation is inherently dangerous. The railroad’s responsibility for establishing and maintaining safety in the railyard extends to all railroad property and includes all equipment, tools, safety devices, and requires regular inspections to assure that safety conditions are met at all times.
- Provide proper training and supervision for the performance of an employee’s duties associated with their employment. A railroad employer is liable for damages caused by a railyard accident if an inexperienced worker is injured on the job, or if they fail to warn employees about hazards or dangerous conditions.
- Protect the employee from unreasonable work quotas in terms of time or production. Safety may be compromised when an employee is pushed to perform a job too quickly or too often to keep up with an employer imposed schedule.
- Prevent employees from performing tasks that either exceeds their physical ability or training and experience.
Types of Railroad Occupational Injuries
- Railyard accident injury - Acute and traumatic bodily injury can include cuts and lacerations, burns, limb injuries and loss of limbs, fractures, spinal injuries, and death.
- Repetitive motion and stress - Railroad employees are prone to injuries caused by repetitive motion or cumulative stress on a particular body part, which may be complicated by excessive vibration, extreme temperatures, or ergonomically incorrect positions.
- Hearing loss - Railyard employees are exposed to excessive workplace noise pollution which over a prolonged period of time can cause significant hearing loss.
- Harmful exposure - Chronic pulmonary conditions or illness can result from continual unprotected exposure to toxic substances such as asbestos, PCBs, diesel fumes, and harmful particulates. A railroad is negligent if it failed to warn an employee of the dangers of these types of lung irritants and failed to provide proper protective equipment and training to avoid such injury.