If I am a railroad worker injured in a motor vehicle collision while operating or occupying a company vehicle, is there anything special I need to know?


    If the accident is 100 percent the fault of your coworker who is operating the company vehicle, this can be handled as a normal FELA matter. If the accident is caused by another non-railroad employee, there are several things you must know. Often your collective bargaining agreement will have a money provision up to $100,000 to compensate you for injuries. This usually applies to freight carriers, not commuter rail carriers such as SEPTA, NJT, PATH or Metro North. If the person who hits you is uninsured or has minimal insurance, you may not be able to pursue a claim against your personal automobile insurance company under your uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist coverage because most automobile policies have an “exclusion” to your UM or UIM policy called “auto provided for regular use.” What that means is if the company vehicle is provided for your “regular use” by the railroad, your personal policy does not apply. There are exceptions, so do not speak to your insurance company before speaking to an attorney, as insurance company employees are trained to trap you into a statement that will allow them to deny coverage under your policy.