Our DC Metro Accident Lawyers Are Known for Successful Claims Against WMATA
In Washington DC, approximately 600,000 people use the Metrorail subway system each day. However, the age of many of the trains combined with delayed maintenance and other negligence means that riders may be at an increased risk for serious subway accidents. While a train crash is often the most severe consequence of Metro negligence, commuters may also sustain injuries from fires, electrical accidents and unsafe conditions at stops. In many cases, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) is legally responsible for these kinds of accidents. However, filing a claim against WMATA, or any government agency, is not easy. Different rules apply and you may have only a limited period of time to file. Therefore, if a subway accident harms you or a loved one, then it is crucial to contact a DC Metro accident lawyer as soon as possible.
The attorneys at Regan Zambri Long PLLC have been taking on Metro authorities in civil claims for over 30 years. In fact, Washingtonian Magazine calls founding partner Patrick Regan “the Washington lawyer you call when you want to sue WMATA.” He has handled more than 75 subway accident cases, recovering tens of millions of dollars in damages for victims. Additionally, Pat Regan and Sal Zambri served as lead lawyers for cases involving the 2009 Metro crash on the Red Line; this accident resulted in nine deaths and 50 severe injuries. We are currently representing the family of Carol Glover, a woman who tragically died as a result of the January 2015 smoke incident at the L’Enfant Plaza Subway Station. In addition to Ms. Glover’s family, we are also representing many other passengers who were seriously injured as a result of smoke inhalation in the L’Enfant Plaza tragedy.
What Are Common Causes of Metro Accidents?
A subway accident can result from many factors, although Metro negligence is most frequently to blame. Common causes of Washington DC subway accidents include:
- Poor training. Improperly trained Metro workers may create hazards for commuters or cause a crash. Additionally, lack of training often means that workers do not know how to respond in the event of a crisis, which may cause further, preventable harm.
- Careless train operation. Train operators must maintain safe speeds and understand how to coordinate routes with other workers. This includes monitoring equipment to ensure there are no nearby trains that may cause an accident. As in the case of the deadly 2009 crash, WMATA operators neglected and ignored proper procedures. In the 2009 crash, poorly maintained and faulty equipment contributed to the oversights that caused the accident.
- Lack of rail maintenance. Poorly maintained rails may cause many safety issues, including electrical accidents and derailment. For example, in the 2015 L’Enfant Plaza tragedy, electrical arcs from the rails filled stopped trains with smoke, causing one victim’s wrongful death.
- Unsafe train cars. Some Metro train cars have been in use since the 1970s, placing riders at a higher risk for injury during a crash. Poor or delayed maintenance on trains may also make malfunctions more likely.
- Dangerous conditions on stairs and escalators. You may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against WMATA for injuries and accidents that happen in the train station.
In many cases, WMATA defers necessary maintenance due to lack of funding and workers. However, these delays dramatically increase the risk of deadly accidents to innocent commuters and tourists. Additionally, even a seemingly small accident or mishap in the subway may turn deadly if Metro does not respond quickly and act in the best interests of public safety.
Can I File a Lawsuit Against WMATA for a Subway Accident?
If you or a loved one sustains injuries in a Metro crash or other accident on the subway, then you may be able to hold WMATA accountable for your medical bills and other damages. However, since this is a government agency, filing a successful injury claim is often a complex process. Generally, you must first file a complaint with the relevant state agency. The Metro services Maryland and Virginia as well as Washington DC, and each area has its own procedures.
A DC Metro accident lawyer can work with you to ensure you meet deadlines and file all the correct paperwork. Then, an attorney can conduct independent inquiries so that you get an explanation. At Regan Zambri Long PLLC, we have decades of experience with these claims, so we know what to check and where to go for answers.
Need More Info? Call for a Free Consultation with a DC Metro Accident Lawyer
If you sustained injuries or lost a loved one in a Metro crash, then your time may be limited. Contact a subway accident lawyer from our law firm today to learn your options and protect your rights. We serve clients in Washington DC, Virginia and Maryland, and can travel to meet you wherever you are.
Call (202) 463-3030 or contact us online today to schedule a free initial consultation.