Did Asbestos in My Railroad Job Cause My Mesothelioma? | Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp

If a railroad worker comes down with mesothelioma cancer or related cancer, the worker and his loved ones may speculate if the disease was caused by railroad equipment containing asbestos. And if the former railroad worker passes away from the disease, the family is often left with no idea why it happened or what their loved one did at the railroad that may have caused cancer.

Most people do not have any experience with the inner workings of railroads, locomotives or railroad equipment. Thus, many families whose loved one passed away from mesothelioma never know what happened and never consider seeking compensation from the railroad for the death of their loved one. The fact is that most mesothelioma is caused by asbestos exposure, and railroads have been a common source of exposure.

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But people need to know that railroads including CSW, Norfolk Southern, Conrail and others used asbestos heavily for years to insulate critical components in railroad equipment. The deadly health effects of asbestos have been known since the early 20th century. But railroads disregarded the health dangers until asbestos was banned from new products by OSHA.

In the meantime, approximately 3,000 people are diagnosed with the disease each year, and the five-year survival rate is as low as 17%.

Mesothelioma Develops Over Years

One of the most dangerous aspects of asbestos is that it takes many years for the cancer of the lung lining to develop. So, it is often easy for railroad companies to ignore the dangers of asbestos because it was not costing them anything financially in the short term. But this started to change in the 1980s as juries started to cost railroad companies big bucks in mesothelioma settlements and judgments.

Possible Compensation in a Mesothelioma Claim

Medical problems from asbestos are often due to a railroad company’s negligence. Filing a mesothelioma lawsuit against the company can result in the following damages:

  • Medical costs
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of intimacy

Your FELA attorney can help determine if other expenses can be covered in your mesothelioma claim.

What You Should Do Next

If you or your loved one is suffering from mesothelioma and thinks asbestos exposure as a railroad worker may have caused the illness, it is important to talk to an experienced mesothelioma attorney to determine legal options to obtain compensation for your injuries.

Selecting an attorney with a high level of experience in mesothelioma cases is critical. The major railroad corporations, such as Norfolk Southern, CSX, Burlington Northern, Conrail and Amtrak, will fight an asbestos mesothelioma case aggressively in court. Many defense attorneys for railroad companies will argue that you were exposed to asbestos in another way than at the railroad.

Our mesothelioma attorneys in Virginia and North Carolina have handled many complex asbestos cancer lawsuits, including two confidential settlements for a railroad conductor and switchman who passed away from mesothelioma in the early 2000s.  

To learn more, contact Shapiro & Appleton today for a complimentary review of your mesothelioma case.