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Federal Railroad Administration – Railroad injuries statistics down, but deaths increased:

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Railroad workers are hard working individuals, in a physically demanding and strenuous job. Although there is a belief that unsafe and poor work conditions are a "occupational hazard," no one should have to work under less than safe conditions. Railroad workers are a group of employees protected under the Federal Employers Liability Act, or the FELA, which was enacted in 1908. This act protects employees from unsafe work conditions, and fellow-employee or employer negligence. Railway workers are faced with long hours, inadequate help, poor job site maintenance, and other possibly unsafe conditions that could cause injury, accidents, and even death.

Railway employees work with many different kinds of equipment, varying in age and state of repair. Employers must provide their workers with adequate equipment in good repair, many railway workers are faced with employers that do not wish to purchase new equipment which may risk injury to the employees that are forced to use outdated machinery and tools.

Railway workers are also constantly stretched on employee staffing and work hours. The railway industry is constantly busy and running at all times of the day. As a result of this, there are time crunches to finish jobs with the employees available. With the current economic crisis, many employers are reducing their staffing as well in order to save on payroll. These furloughs or layoffs sometimes force employees to work alone on jobs that should be done by multiple people. As a result, mistakes and dangerous work behavior can arise.

In fact, railway injuries and deaths are currently on the rise, at a time that many industries have declining injury rates. In 2008, the Federal Railroad Administration which maintains statistics on the railway industry reported that there were approximately eleven thousand injuries in the first eleven months of the year.

For more information on railway injuries and railway injury law, please visit the website of Shapiro, Cooper, Lewis and Appleton, a firm with a rich history of railway injury advocacy for folks hurt on jobs on the tracks. (http://www.hsinjurylaw.com/practice_areas/railroad-accidentsinjury-occupational-injuriesdiseases.cfm) If you, or someone you know has been injured as a railway employee, please do not hesitate to contact someone who can represent you properly and make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.