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Diesel Exhaust Exposure

Reviewing Rail Yard Lung Cancer Claims
Freight train on tracks with diesel exhaust

Railroad Cancer Lawyers

Occupational Lung Cancer claims are a lot more common in the railroad industry than many others, due to the extreme nature of the work, with many former employees coming into contact with diesel exhaust, creosote, silica and asbestos on a daily basis. 

Any former Conrail, CSX or Norfolk Southern employee who has worked at Oak Point Yard or another rail station and has a confirmed cancer diagnosis may have a valuable case

The Lyon Firm is investigating new cancer claims linked to past toxic exposure at a rail yard in New Jersey and nationwide. Many railroad staff have been bombarded by an assault of toxic materials and chemicals that are known to cause cancer. Carcinogens like diesel exhaust have been a part of life in many work sites where diesel locomotives pass through each day. Almost any worker who spent years in a rail yard was likely exposed to large amounts of diesel, benzene, and creosote. 

Workers and their families have noted in testimony that every day after work, they returned home with the unmistakable odor of diesel on their clothing and person. When a former railroad worker falls ill due to preventable workplace toxic exposure, they may choose to file a personal injury claim and seek compensation. Plaintiffs may be able to hold their former employer accountable and improve their financial situation after an illness or cancer disrupts their lives. 

What Can You Recover in a Railroad Cancer Settlement?

Victims of toxic diesel exposure may be able to recover economic and non-economic damages if they have a documented work history at a work site where toxic materials were regularly handled. Our plaintiffs have been able to settle claims and recover the following:

  • Lost wages and lost future earnings
  • Incurred medical costs and hospital bills
  • The costs of future treatments, surgery and rehab
  • Long-term disability
  • Pain and suffering, and emotional distress

Each workplace injury cases is different, and any legal outcome will depend on your particular work situation and specific diagnosis. Our lawyers can assist you in filing a claim and numerating exactly what compensation you deserve. 

About Oak Island Yard

Oak Island Yard is a freight rail yard located in the industrial area of Ironbound, Newark, New Jersey. In the past, the huge rail complex handled up to a thousand rail cars every day and includes an engine house, classification yard, auto unloading terminal, and maintenance facilities. The site has ten reception tracks, an automated hump, 30 classification tracks, and nine departure tracks.

The yard was built over a hundred years ago, was expanded several times and is still operating today. Oak Island became part of the Consolidated Rail Corporation (Conrail) in 1976, and it is jointly owned by the Norfolk Southern Railway and CSX. Several lines converge at the Oak Island Yard, including the following:

  • The Conrail Lehigh Line which travels to the west passing over the Northeast Corridor to run parallel Raritan Valley Line just west of the Hunter Connection.
  • The Passaic and Harsimus Line, running through the yard and heading north to Marion Junction.
  • The Chemical Coast, known as the Garden State Secondary line which heads south.


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diesel exhaust smoke shown blanketing a railyard

What Cancers Are Linked to Railroad Diesel Exposure?

Thousands of former railroad workers have filed suit to recover compensation following a definitive cancer or lung disease diagnosis. The following conditions have been linked to chronic exposure to diesel exhaust, benzene, creosote, silica and asbestos:

  • Lung Cancer
  • Bladder Cancer
  • Esophageal Cancer
  • Nasopharyngeal Cancer
  • Stomach Cancer
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)
  • Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS)
  • Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL)
  • Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL)
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Aplastic Anemia
  • COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
  • Emphysema
  • RADS (Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome)
  • Interstitial Lung Disease
  • Pulmonary Fibrosis 

After a medical professional confirms lung disease or cancer, Oak Island employees may be entitled to compensation under the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA), and can also consider further legal action. Workers’ compensation and FELA claims can help for certain, but it may also be necessary to contact a railroad cancer attorney at (513) 381-2333.

What Oak Island Yard Workers Are at Risk?

Nearly all workers in the yard can be at risk, though there are some particularly perilous jobs in the railroad industry. Notably, any job that required workers to spend time in poorly ventilated shops, or to handle toxic materials on a daily basis. Diesel exhaust exposure was extremely pervasive, and many workers could hardly protect themselves. 

Some positions that have been at an increased cancer risk in the past include the following:

  • Railroad mechanics
  • Conductors
  • Engineers
  • Yardmen
  • Trackmen
  • Signal operators
  • Pipefitters
  • Boiler staff
  • Maintenance staff
  • Machinists

Why Hire The Lyon Firm?

Joe Lyon has 20 years of experience filing work injury and toxic exposure lawsuits on behalf of victims and plaintiffs in all fifty states. The firm has the experience, the resources and the willingness to take on difficult cases for those in great need of legal assistance. 

When an employer fails to properly protect workers from hazards, there is the option of filing a claim and seeking legal recourse. Settling these kinds of claims may require industry experts to link a specific illness to past workplace exposure, but that is the job of the Lyon Firm. We work with some of the largest law firms in the country, and we have settled numerous toxic exposure cases. 

photo of attorney Joe Lyon
A Voice for America’s Railroad Workers

Why Should I File a Lawsuit?

If you want justice, compensation and peace of mind, contact the Lyon Firm at (513) 381-2333. We have the legal experience and resources needed to pursue maximum compensation. By filing a lawsuit, you can improve safety standards in the future, and at the same time get critical financial help. 

Compensation in these cases can help any plaintiffs substantially, particularly when your insurance fails to cover all the medical costs involved with treatments and medications. 


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Oak Island Toxic Exposure FAQ

Can I File A Railroad Injury Lawsuit?

You may begin to think about taking legal action and hiring an attorney the minute you are diagnosed with a serious illness and believe it was caused by your past employment at a rail company. Many plaintiffs have had success in the same situations, and a settlement may be possible. Contact our lawyers to review. Free consultations. 

Who Is Responsible For My Injury?

There are established work safety standards, and there have been for over 50 years. If an employer fails to educate you about the hazards of a job, fails to provide and maintain safety equipment, and fails to warn you about possible cancer-causing toxins at the workplace, you may have a claim. 

Is It Hard To Win a Railroad Work Injury Case?

Railroad companies do not want to go to court and have a trial to determine whether or not they are accountable for a worker’s cancer diagnosis. Companies like CSX and Norfolk Southern are much more likely to settle a diesel cancer case than risk a huge verdict that goes in a plaintiffs’ favor. 

How Can a Railroad Cancer Lawyer Help Me?

These cases will require a fair amount of investigation and expert analysis. We will assume all the costs related to building a strong case and you can focus on your health and your family. 

If you would like to learn more about hiring legal representation, contact the Lyon Firm at (513) 381-2333.