Reach Us 24/7

Call 248-886-8650 Now


White Lake Train & Railroad Accident Attorney

Have you been injured in a train/railroad accident? We can help you receive compensation. Contact the Law Offices of Christopher Trainor & Associates for a free consultation today.

If you were injured in a railroad accident, you suffered one of the worst tragedies anyone can experience. You likely never thought a train ride would upend your life as you know it, but now you're grappling with painful injuries, seemingly endless doctor visits, mounting bills, and emotional anguish. It’s important that you know you do not have to go through this alone.

You can turn to a White Lake train and railroad accident lawyer to guide you through this incredibly challenging situation. What happened to you is not your fault, and you deserve to be compensated for the harm you have suffered. With aggressive legal representation, the responsible party can (and should) be held accountable.

Let Us Fight for You

We represent people in your situation at the Law Offices of Christopher Trainor & Associates. Our team understands the legal intricacies of train accident cases and is committed to serving you with the experience and compassion you need.

We've helped countless White Lake residents bounce back from heart-wrenching accidents. Our legal team has done so using a simple 3-step approach.

  • One: Contact us for a free consultation. We'll listen to your story and help you determine if you have a path forward in seeking compensation.
  • Two: We'll craft a strategic plan for achieving the best possible outcome.
  • Three: Focus on recovering while we do the heavy lifting to secure fair and full compensation.

It is highly advisable to hire a lawyer to prevent insurance companies from taking advantage of you or delaying your compensation. Don't let this opportunity slip away. Partner with us to safeguard your future. Your road to recovery starts with a free consultation.

An Overview of Train and Railroad Accidents

Train and railroad accidents impact innocent lives every year. According to the International Union of Railways, approximately 3,000 train accidents occur worldwide annually, resulting in thousands of fatalities and injuries. Here are the most recent United States statistics from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) and National Security Council (NSC) Injury Facts:

  • 742 train derailments in October 2023
  • 467 deaths since 1975 (12 in 2022)
  • 12,575 train accident injuries between 1975 and 2022
  • 11% increase in railroad fatalities (954) from 2021 to 2022
  • 6% increase in non-fatal injuries (6,252) since 2021

These figures highlight the ongoing risks and challenges associated with rail transportation safety. Efforts to improve safety and reduce accidents continue but have not managed to eliminate these devastating incidents.

Michigan has invested in railroad infrastructure in an effort to bring down the numbers of railroad incidents. In 2022, the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) received nearly $1.6 million from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to improve the intercity passenger railway system. These improvements are still ongoing so the final impact they will have remains to be seen.

Types of Train and Railroad Accidents

According to the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), the state boasts over 3,600 miles of active railroad tracks. Residents of White Lake rely on the railway as a convenient travel option to reach their destinations. Like any other form of transportation, accidents are unavoidable. Train passengers should be aware of these common accidents:

  • Derailments: These incidents occur when a train jumps off the tracks due to defects, equipment failure, or excessive speed.
  • Collisions: Trains can collide with each other or another vehicle, head-on or behind.
  • Pedestrian Accidents: These wrecks involve pedestrians trespassing on railroad tracks or attempting to cross them illegally.
  • Hazardous Material Spills: Trains transporting dangerous materials can result in spills, leaks, or explosions.

Train crashes endanger passengers, crew, and bystanders. MDOT has prioritized railroad safety through various initiatives. Efforts include safer railroad crossings, awareness campaigns, and new accident prevention technology.

Common Causes of Train Accidents in Michigan

Train accidents can occur in many different ways. The following are the most frequent types:

  • Human Error: Train operators can make mistakes by ignoring safety protocols like speeding, disregarding signals, or operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Train collisions can occur due to errors in judgment made by pedestrians or motorists at railroad crossings.
  • Mechanical Failure: These failures can range from brake malfunctions to engine defects, which may result from poor maintenance or manufacturing defects.
  • Track Defects: Defects like broken rails, worn-out ties, or misaligned switches may cause derailments or accidents, especially at high speeds. Freezing temperatures or heavy rainfall can also worsen track defects.
  • Weather Conditions: Bad weather, such as snow, ice, fog, and heavy rain, can affect the safety and efficiency of train operations. Reduced visibility, slippery tracks, and decreased braking efficiency can contribute to accidents.
  • Collisions at Crossings: Motorists often cause accidents by disregarding warning signals, misjudging oncoming train speed and distance, or rushing to cross the tracks. Collisions at crossings can also occur due to inadequate signage or malfunctioning crossing gates.

Common Train Accident Injuries

Train accidents can lead to diverse injuries. The severity of personal injuries resulting from train collisions varies depending on factors such as train speed, collision type, and hazardous materials onboard. Victims, if they survive, often suffer the following accident-related medical issues:

  • Traumatic Brain Injuries: TBIs happen when the brain is injured by a sudden blow or jolt to the head. This injury can range from mild, like a concussion, to severe, causing long-term problems with memory, thinking, and even behavior. Symptoms may include headaches, dizziness, memory loss, and changes in mood or behavior.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries: The impact of a train collision can result in spinal cord damage, leading to paralysis or loss of sensation in the body. Rehabilitation and ongoing medical care are often necessary to manage the long-term effects of spinal cord injuries.
  • Burn Injuries: Train accidents often result in fires or explosions, causing severe burn injuries. Thermal and chemical burns are common in these situations. Burn injuries can cause severe pain, disfigurement, and long-term complications like scarring and reduced mobility.
  • Orthopedic Injuries: The force of a train collision can cause fractures, dislocations, and other orthopedic injuries. Broken bones, torn ligaments, and joint injuries are prevalent in train accident scenarios. These injuries may require surgical intervention, physical therapy, and ongoing medical treatment for optimal recovery.
  • Soft Tissue Injuries: Whiplash, strains, and sprains often occur with a sudden deceleration or impact. These injuries can cause significant physical pain and discomfort, limiting mobility and affecting daily activities.

Train accidents can devastate many lives and impact entire communities. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact a qualified White Lake train accident attorney who can provide legal guidance.

Steps to Follow After a Train Accident

A train collision can be a confusing experience. When a horrific accident happens, it is common to feel overwhelmed, traumatized, and unsure of what to do next. Here are some things you should do in the moments and days after getting injured in a railroad incident.

  1. Seek Medical Care: Put your health and safety first. Get a medical evaluation immediately, even if you think you aren’t badly hurt. Some injuries may not show symptoms right away, and often adrenaline can mask symptoms at first. Prompt medical care provides the diagnosis, treatment, and documentation needed for your claim.
  2. Contact Authorities: Report the train accident to local law enforcement and emergency services. They will document the accident scene, gather evidence, and create an official report, which is valuable information needed for your claim.
  3. Document the Scene of the Accident: Collect as much evidence as you can. Snap photos of damaged vehicles or property and visible injuries. Get contact details from eyewitnesses. This information can be useful when building a case for compensation.
  4. Preserve Evidence: Evidence is needed to prove liability in a train accident case. Do not tamper with or remove any evidence from the accident scene, including wreckage, debris, or any objects involved. Your attorney may need this evidence to reconstruct the events leading up to the accident and demonstrate fault.
  5. Keep Detailed Records: Maintain thorough records of all medical treatments, expenses, and other losses incurred due to the accident. This includes medical bills, pharmacy receipts, and receipts for any out-of-pocket expenses related to your injuries. Keeping organized records will help you assess your damages when you seek to recover compensation.
  6. Avoid Speaking with Insurance Companies: Following a train accident, insurance companies representing the railroad or other parties involved may contact you for statements or to offer a settlement. They may attempt to minimize liability or pressure you into accepting an inadequate settlement for your needs.
  7. Talk to a Train Accident Attorney: Seek guidance from a White Lake lawyer who has experience handling railroad cases. A skilled attorney protects your rights, handles settlement negotiations, and makes sure to seek maximum compensation.

A train accident is a life-shattering event. However, taking the appropriate steps afterward helps protect your physical, legal, and financial interests. With a knowledgeable attorney's support, you can confidently pursue justice.

Laws That Impact White Lake Train Accident Claims

Michigan train accidents can result in serious injuries, fatalities, and property damage. After a rail disaster, determining fault according to federal and state standards is complex. Train accident victims should understand negligence and liability to pursue compensation.

Negligence at a Glance

Negligence plays a central role in train accident claims. When someone fails to exercise reasonable care, leading to harm, they may be deemed negligent. Proving a defendant's negligent actions involves four elements:

  1. Duty of Care: This means that the train operator and the company running the railroad must operate the train safely and follow all safety regulations.
  2. Breach of Duty: If the train operator or the railroad company fails to fulfill their duty of care, such as speeding, ignoring warning signals, or not maintaining the tracks, they breach their duty.
  3. Causation: It must be shown that the breach of duty directly caused the accident or injury. For example, if the train operator was distracted which led to a collision, that would be the reason for the injuries that resulted.
  4. Damages: The injured party must have suffered actual damages due to the accident, such as physical injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, or pain and suffering.

Liability at a Glance

Liability determines who is responsible for the accident and resulting injuries. Liability often falls on the party whose negligence caused the accident. However, liability can be complex in train accidents involving multiple parties.

Michigan's Statute of Limitations

The Great Lakes state has a statute of limitations for personal injury claims. If you're thinking about filing a train accident lawsuit, you have three years from the accident date to take action. Waiting too long to file a claim can result in a dismissal of your case, leaving you without recourse to recover damages.

That's why consulting with a White Lake train accident attorney can be beneficial. They can ensure your rights are fully protected under Michigan law.

Damages You Can Recover

Train accidents can occur suddenly and without warning, leaving victims with physical pain, emotional trauma, and financial burdens. White Lake residents who suffered injuries in train crashes may be entitled to various compensation.

  • Medical Expenses: Victims of train accidents may accrue substantial medical bills due to injuries sustained in the collision. Compensation for medical expenses can cover costs such as hospitalization, surgery, medication, rehabilitation, and ongoing medical care.
  • Lost Wages: Many individuals injured in train accidents cannot work while they recover, resulting in lost income. Compensation for lost wages aims to alleviate the financial strain caused by the inability to earn income during recovery.
  • Pain and Suffering: Train accidents can cause physical pain, emotional distress, and psychological trauma for victims. Compensation for pain and suffering seeks to address the non-economic damages endured by victims, including physical discomfort, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Disability and Impairment: Some train accident victims may sustain permanent disabilities or impairments affecting their ability to work or perform daily activities. Compensation for a permanent disability and impairment aims to provide financial support for long-term care, accommodations, and loss of earning capacity.
  • Property Damage: Train accidents may also damage vehicles, personal belongings, or property adjacent to the railroad tracks. Compensation for property damage covers the cost of repairing or replacing damaged property.
  • Emotional Distress: Emotional distress refers to the psychological suffering experienced by victims, such as feelings of fear, anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a train accident, you have the legal right to secure compensation. The advocacy of an experienced White Lake attorney can help make that happen.

Who Can Be Held Liable in Railroad Accidents

In many cases, it might be challenging to identify the party who caused the accident. Why? Because more than one party may have contributed to what happened. Let's examine the potential liable parties.

  • Railroad Companies: Railroad companies are responsible for ensuring the safety of their tracks, equipment, and operations. They may be liable if maintenance, inspection, or operation negligence contributes to an accident.
  • Train Operators: Train operators are responsible for operating trains safely and adhering to traffic signals and regulations. Examples of a train operator's negligence include speeding or ignoring safety protocols.
  • Manufacturers: Trains and railroad equipment manufacturers must ensure their products are safe. If a defect in the design or manufacturing of train components contributes to an accident, the manufacturer may be liable for injuries.
  • Government Entities: Government entities responsible for maintaining railroad crossings and signals must ensure they are properly functioning and adequately maintained. Failure to maintain safe crossings or properly signal train movements could result in government liability for accidents.
  • Third Parties: Other motorists, pedestrians, or entities near railroad tracks may also be liable if their actions contribute to an accident. For example, a driver attempting to cross railroad tracks illegally or a property owner obstructing visibility near tracks may share liability.

Liability determination is the key to securing compensation for injuries and damages. You can hold the responsible party accountable once you know who's liable for the accident. A qualified White Lake train accident attorney can steer you in the right direction for taking legal action.

How White Lake Accident Attorneys Help Victims

Some injured victims believe that attorneys are all the same. That's simply not the case. An experienced accident lawyer knows how to bring the at-fault parties to justice. Here are some key qualities to look for in a train accident attorney:

  • Experience Matters: Seek out an attorney with a proven track record of success in handling railroad accident cases. Look for someone with years of experience in this area of law.
  • Personal Injury Law Knowledge: Your attorney should specialize in personal injury law. This experience ensures they understand the complexities of these cases and can advocate for your rights.
  • Compassion and Empathy: The aftermath of a train accident can take a heavy toll on your emotional well-being. Look for an attorney who shows patience, asks how you're doing, and listens to you. They should be supportive and understanding throughout the legal process.
  • Strong Communication Skills: Your attorney should be responsive to your questions and concerns. Clear and open communication helps build trust and ensures you're always aware of your case's progress.
  • Trial Experience: Many train accident cases are resolved through negotiation or settlement. However, in the rare case that you will need to go to trial, you will want an attorney who knows how to build a solid case from the beginning so that you can prevail in court.

Tips for Selecting the Best Legal Representation

  • Research and Compare: Take the time to research different attorneys in White Lake who specialize in train collisions. Compare their experience, track record, and client reviews to make an informed decision.
  • Schedule Consultations: Most attorneys offer a free initial consultation. Take advantage of this opportunity to discuss your train accident case with potential lawyers. Pay attention to how they respond to your questions and whether you feel comfortable working with them.
  • Ask the Right Questions: During consultations, don't hesitate to ask specific questions about the attorney's experience, approach to handling cases, and expected outcomes. This information will help you assess their suitability for your needs.
  • Consider Local Experience: Hiring a local attorney familiar with Michigan laws and the White Lake community can offer significant advantages. They'll have insider knowledge of local court procedures, judges, and other legal factors that could impact your case's outcome.

A lawyer's intimate knowledge of state-specific statutes, court procedures, and precedent-setting train accident cases can benefit you. With the proper legal representation, you can focus on recovering while your attorney handles all the legal affairs.

FAQs About White Lake Train and Railroad Accidents

Can you sue Amtrak if you're injured in a train accident?

You may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. However, filing a lawsuit against Amtrak involves a deep knowledge of federal laws and regulations governing railroad liability, so it's best to consult an experienced attorney.

What legal options are available for wrongful death claims after a train accident?

If a loved one has tragically lost their life, surviving family members may pursue a wrongful death claim. These claims seek compensation for the financial losses, emotional suffering, and other damages resulting from the loss of their loved one. An attorney specializing in wrongful death cases can help you with this claim.

How are legal fees handled?

Many personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This "no win, no fee" model means you don't pay legal fees upfront. Instead, your attorney's fees are collected and paid only if they secure a settlement or verdict.

Get Your Claim Settled With a Winning Team

At the Law Offices of Christopher Trainor & Associates, we understand the uphill battle you face following a train accident. Our firm knows that medical bills, lost wages, and emotional trauma can worsen your ability to recover. You may not know what to do next, and that's where our team of White Lake personal injury lawyers steps in to help.

When you choose our firm, you're not just hiring attorneys. Instead, you're partnering with allies who don't hold back when it comes to fighting for our clients. We have a deep-rooted commitment to our White Lake community and a proven track record of success in representing clients who have been injured through no fault of their own.

Our approach is simple yet effective: we combine our extensive legal knowledge with genuine compassion and true dedication to ensure you receive the best possible outcome.

Contact Us Today for a Free Initial Consultation

If you've been injured in a train or railroad accident, don't wait to seek the help you need. Take the first step now. We'll listen to your story, assess your case, and help you determine the best path forward. Call us at 248-886-8650 or email us to schedule your free consultation.

Get Answers From Experienced Lawyers

We are available for free consultations in person, via Zoom or through FaceTime.

Required Fields *
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

White Lake

9750 Highland Road
White Lake, MI 48386
248-886-8650White Lake


336 W First Street
Flint, MI 48502


251 North Rose St., Ste 200-6013
Kalamazoo, MI 49007

Ann Arbor 

2723 South State St. Ste 250-15096
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
734-882-2646Ann Arbor

Grand Rapids 

250 Monroe NW, Ste 400-706039
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
616-591-3700Grand Rapids 


2000 Town Center, Ste 1900-1237
Southfield, MI 48075


120 N Washington, Ste 300-5101
Lansing, MI 48933

Bay City 

401 Center Ave, Ste 25
Bay City, MI 48708

989-262-0787Bay City
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram