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What is the Boiler Inspection Act?

The Boiler Inspection Act (also known as the Federal Locomotive Inspection Act) protects employees of the railroad by imposing an absolute duty upon the railroad to furnish and maintain the parts and appurtenances of their locomotives in a safe and proper condition. An “appurtenance” is simply something that is attached to the locomotive engine or that is necessary for its use. Something can be an appurtenance even if it is not required by federal regulations. In order to recover under the Boiler Inspection Act, it is not necessary to prove a specific mechanical or structural defect, only that part of the locomotive was unsafe.

Some of the types of Boiler Inspection Act claims that Faerber & Anderson have handled include:

  • Locomotive Cab Crashworthiness claims – many cabs consist of tight, cramped quarters that contain metal control stands, metal levers, steel cab walls and metal heater boxes, all of which have no padding or protection, and can be extremely dangerous in the event of a crash or derailment;
  • Defective Seat Cases – broken pedestals, stuck armrests, inadequate shock absorbers have all led to traumatic and repetitive trauma injuries;
  • Grease, or oil, sand, ice and other foreign substances on running boards or catwalks
  • Broken or missing screens; and
  • Exploding toilets.

The benefit of proving a Boiler Inspection Act claim is that any contributory negligence by the employee does not reduce the verdict.