Trusted Train Derailment Attorneys in Columbus, Ohio

Our Columbus personal injury attorneys at Oliver Law Office know nearly every Ohio resident can remember where they were on February 3, 2023, at 8:55 p.m. EST, when 38 Norfolk Southern freight train cars carrying hazardous materials derailed in East Palestine, Ohio.

Derailments are the most common type of train accident, according to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), accounting for 71% of all train accidents nationwide. These disastrous events are often preventable and lead to catastrophic injuries and fatalities, impacting pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcyclists, and vehicle occupants.

Since 2000, Oliver Law Office has been putting the needs of Ohio residents who are hurt or lose their loved ones first because being taken care of is what it is all about. No matter where you live or work in Ohio, if your life has been impacted by negligence, we want to help.

Our law firm founder and managing attorney, Jami S. Oliver, has been voted 2024 Lawyer of the Year in Columbus, Ohio, for Product Liability and named to the Best Lawyers 2024 list in multiple practice areas. Allow our skilled team, led by one of Ohio’s best, to review your claim so you can start making informed decisions about your case and future.


Trusted Train Derailment

What we do differently at Oliver Law Office is ensure our clients know how important they are to us. You are not simply another case. You are not a number. You have gone through a physically and emotionally traumatic experience, and you deserve our full attention.

Oliver Law Office was built to prioritize and support you through unparalleled communication and commitment to your individualized needs by delivering an experience that instills trust and encourages the ethical and passionate pursuit of justice.

We handle all injury cases on a contingency basis, which means we advance all the costs necessary to pursue your claim, and we only charge you a fee if and when there is a successful result.

Our Ohio train derailment attorneys and team have successfully represented clients for nearly 30 years. We have intimate knowledge of Ohio’s personal injury laws and how to obtain maximum compensation from all insurance coverages and policies for each client’s unique recovery needs.

Your complete recovery is essential, and you are worth the fight. Getting your life back on track means not giving up on the process. We won’t either. Contact us today to learn more.


About 1,000 derailments occur every year across the United States, according to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). Last year, there were 1,259 nationwide, with 297 occurring in Ohio. Since 1975, Ohio has had 5,756 train derailments.

Train derailments can occur due to various factors, and the causes are often complex, involving a combination of human error, equipment failure, and environmental conditions.

Some of the most common causes of train derailments include:

  • Track Defects

Issues with the railroad tracks, such as misalignment, broken rails, worn-out tracks, or inadequate maintenance, can lead to derailments. Regular inspections and supervision are essential to prevent track-related accidents. Failure to maintain these critical rails could result in liability claims.

  • Equipment Failure

Malfunctions or failures in the train’s equipment, including problems with braking systems, wheel defects, or coupling issues on locomotives and railcars, can contribute to derailments.

  • Human Error

Human factors, including errors made by train operators, signal maintainers, or maintenance crews, can lead to derailments. Mistakes in operating the train, miscommunication, or inadequate training can be contributing factors and can lead to proving liability in personal injury claims.

  • Excessive Speed

Trains traveling at speeds higher than recommended for the given track conditions or curves are at an increased risk of derailment. Excessive speed can cause the train to lose stability and derail, leading to catastrophic crashes, injuries, and fatalities.

  • Train Overloading

Trains that exceed their recommended weight limits or are improperly loaded can experience difficulty maintaining stability on the tracks, increasing the risk of derailment.

  • Weather Conditions

Adverse weather conditions, like heavy rain, snow, ice, or flooding, can impact the condition of the tracks and contribute to derailments. Severe weather can also affect the train’s braking and traction systems. When the train’s owner or operators do not heed weather warnings, people can get hurt or lose their lives to negligence.

  • Signal Failures

Malfunctions or failures in signaling systems can result in miscommunication between trains and control centers. This can lead to situations where trains are on the same track simultaneously, increasing the risk of derailment and crashes.

  • Human Factors at Crossings

Collisions between trains and vehicles at railroad crossings on tracks can lead to derailments. Driver or pedestrian errors and inadequate warning systems can contribute to these incidents.

Preventing train derailments requires a comprehensive approach, including regular maintenance of tracks and equipment, proper training of personnel, adherence to safety protocols, and effective communication systems. Railroad companies and regulatory authorities are crucial in implementing safety measures to minimize the risk of derailments and protect passengers and cargo. They can be liable for the train crash when they do not uphold their duty of care.

If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a train derailment, contact our skilled personal injury attorneys in Columbus today to discuss your claim during a free consultation.


If you have suffered injuries or lost a loved one in a train accident caused by negligence in Ohio, contact our dedicated Columbus personal injury attorneys today. There is never a charge to speak with an attorney or any upfront or out-of-pocket costs to associate with our law firm in an injury or death matter.

Oliver Law Office is a client-focused law firm emphasizing the individualized needs of each client with personalized attention. We handle every case with confidence, courage, and determination. Please call us at (614)-220-9100 or fill out a Contact Us form so we can be in touch as soon as possible – let’s get started on your claim today.