As we all learned in grade school, railroads played a critical role in the expansion of the United States from a small group of states on the East coast to a nation that spans across much of North America.
But as time went on and our population expanded, the potential for dangerous collisions between people and trains increased dramatically.
Unfortunately, the big railroad companies have often failed to take the necessary steps to prevent such accidents. Too often, they take the callous and simplistic position that the trains have the right-of-way at railroad crossings, and, therefore, any collision is automatically the fault of the automobile driver or pedestrian.
We have represented people who have suffered catastrophic injuries, or the death of a loved one, as a result of collisions at railroad crossings.
Sometimes, the train engineer has failed to properly warn motorists that a train was approaching. In many cases, the design of the railroad crossing, and adjacent roadway, made it difficult for drivers to see an oncoming train until it was too late.
Even after tragic accidents occurred, the people with control over the crossings have often failed to make them safer.
In order to successfully pursue these cases, we have developed expertise in the procedures by which trains operate and railroad crossings are designed and maintained, and we have worked with the leading experts from around the United States.
Our expertise in these matters is reflected in an article written by Roger Booth for the March 2008 issue of the Advocate, a publication of the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles.