Flaherty Law
815-577-7500
24047 W. Lockport Street, Suite 201C, Plainfield, IL 60544
 
Will County Personal Injury Attorney
Call Us Now at 815-577-7500
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Call Us Now at 815-577-7500. Free Consultations.
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Will County injury lawyers

Here in the Chicago metropolitan area, thousands of commuters utilize public transportation to get to and from work each day. Chicago is home to an intricate rail system with Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), Amtrak, and Metra trains. While trains are one of the safest public transit systems in the United States, accidents do occur.

According to statistics compiled by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), 864 Americans were fatally injured in train accidents in 2017, while thousands of others were injured, many severely. If you or a loved one are injured in a train accident, you may be entitled to injury compensation. 

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Plainfield train accidents attorneyEvery year, there are always a troubling number of deaths and injuries caused by someone crossing railroad tracks and being struck by a train. Unfortunately, too many people and families must deal with the death of a loved one from a train accident. Furthermore, when someone survives a train accident, they may have to deal with permanent, life-altering injuries sustained from the collision. Understanding the statistics of deaths and serious injuries caused by train accidents can help people avoid these accidents in the future.

Vehicle/Train Crashes By the Numbers

  • In 2015, 265 people were killed by a train in the United States. 
  • A train accident occurs every three hours in the United States, on average. 
  • 50 percent of all train accidents occur at crossings with active warning devices, including bells, lights, and railroad gates. 
  • In 2016, there were 120 train collisions in Illinois, with 22 of them resulting in death and 43 injuries.
  • In Illinois, the six counties in the Chicago area account for about 73 percent of the State of Illinois’ risk of a train/vehicle accident.
  • A train traveling at 55 miles per hour will take approximately 18 football fields to come to a stop. 

Suicide As a Factor in Train Accidents

As of July, there have been as many as 16 people who were killed in a train accident in 2017 in which the death was ruled to be a suicide, according to Metra, one of the largest commuter rail systems in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs and counties. Between 2013 and 2016, there have been, on average, 18 suicides reported each year from train accidents. 

As the awareness of suicide on train tracks has grown, several programs have been put in place to emphasize prevention efforts, with the goal of decreasing the number of suicides resulting from train accidents to zero as quickly as possible. Over 150 Metra employees have been trained in the company’s mental health and suicide awareness program, helping them learn to identify at-risk people at Metra stations or on train tracks and refer them to the appropriate authorities for further treatment.

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truck driver fatigueTransportation safety experts have determined that undiagnosed or inadequately treated obstructive sleep apnea in drivers can lead to accidents caused by sleepiness or inattentiveness. Two agencies in the United States Transportation Department had been pushing for more testing to be required of truck drivers and train operators for this disorder.

However, that initiative was recently dropped. The Transportation Department says that the condition is still an “on-going concern,” but that it can be addressed using existing regulations.

When the effort to regulate sleep apnea testing began, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and Federal Railroad Administration stated that untreated obstructive sleep apnea "can cause unintended sleep episodes and resulting deficits in attention, concentration, situational awareness, and memory, thus reducing the capacity to safely respond to hazards when performing safety sensitive duties."

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24047 W. Lockport Street, Suite 201C
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