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For Railroad Employees
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The Federal Rail Safety Act, 49 U.S. Code Section 20109 (FRSA) is an additional Federal Law enacted to protect railroad employees. The law states, in pertinent part:
“A railroad carrier engaged in interstate or foreign commerce, a contractor, or a subcontractor of such railroad or carrier, or an officer or employee of such carrier, may not discharge, demote, suspend, reprimand, or in any other way discriminate against an employee if such discrimination is due, in whole or in part, to the employee’s lawful, good faith act done, or perceived by the employer to have been done or about to be done.“
Further, a railroad carrier may not deny, delay, or interfere with the medical or first aid treatment of an employee who is injured during the course of employment. If transportation to a hospital is requested by an employee who is injured during the course of employment, the railroad shall promptly arrange to have the injured employee transported to the nearest hospital where the employee can receive safe and appropriate medical care.
A violation of FRSA may entitle the employee to reinstatement, removal of discipline, compensatory damages, and punitive damages (up to $ 250,000.00).
An FRSA claim is filed with OSHA. The claim must be filed with OSHA within 180 days of the discriminatory conduct by the railroad. Failure to do so bars the employee from proceeding on his FRSA claim.