A number of alarming train incidents have been reported in Victoria; from passengers getting caught in train doors to a mother being separated from her baby. What is the legal recourse available to people injured on trains? The TAC scheme provides insurance for people injured on Victorian trains.
The nature and extent of benefits and compensation available will vary based on the circumstances of the accident. Certainly, those caught in train doors or involved in a collision with a train will be covered by the scheme.
What TAC benefits are available to people injured on trains?
Benefits can include, amongst other things:
- medical expenses;
- lost wages; and
- lump sum compensation for permanent injury.
Where serious injuries occur, the question of whether the cover extends to pain and suffering damages and future economic loss will depend on whether the train driver or Metro (the operators of Victorian metropolitan trains) have negligently contributed to the accident. Given issues with timetabling, increased demand for trains and a reduction in staffing levels, this appears to be fertile ground for argument.
When considering the mother who was separated from her baby while attempting to board a train, the key questions are:
1. Have any injuries been sustained?
2. If there were injuries, are the injuries a result of the driving of the train?
Is there access to pain and suffering compensation?
Victorian law only provides access to pain and suffering compensation when someone has suffered significant or serious permanent ongoing injuries, not for momentary distress; regardless of the severity. Further, the TAC will only step in and pay compensation for medical expenses, lost wages or lump sum compensation where the injuries are a result of the driving of a train (including operation of the doors).
If the incident is not covered by the TAC scheme, in this instance the mother must first prove the negligence of the train driver or Metro before being entitled to reimbursement for her expenses. This can be costly, time consuming, and in many situations not worth pursuing.
If you’ve been injured as a result of a motor vehicle, bicycle, tram, train or as a pedestrian and you either want to pursue a TAC claim or you’re experiencing difficulties (including delays), dealing with the TAC, feel free to get in touch with today’s writer, Megan Caines.
At Polaris, we offer:
- Free initial advice
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Unsure if you have a claim or not sure who to turn to?
If you’re unsure if you have a claim or note, use our 100% free and secure online tool. You can answer a few basic questions about your accident. The online assistant will guide you through and assist you in determining whether or not you are eligible to lodge a TAC claim.