Tagged Articles

railroad safety 7 articles

Conductor’s Widow Sues Amtrak, CSX Over Deadly South Carolina Crash

Amtrak and CSX are facing a lawsuit filed by the widow of the train engineer who was killed Feb. 4 when Amtrak Train 91 was wrongfully diverted onto a side track, where it collided with a CSX freight train near Cayce, South Carolina. Attorneys for Christine Cella and her two children filed the lawsuit against Amtrak and CSX alleging negligence in the operation of a track switch caused 36-year-old Michael Cella’s death. The collision also killed 54-year-old Amtrak engineer Michael Kempf and injured 116 passengers and crew aboard the train, which was traveling from New York to Miami. The National ... Read More

NTSB Recommends Four Railroad Safety Measures In Wake of 2015 Rail Accidents

Federal safety investigators recommended the railroad industry take four measures to improve rail safety based on its findings from two separate 2015 train accidents. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said its recommendations stem from its probe of a railroad accident in Kansas City, Kansas, that killed a Union Pacific employee in September 2015 and an oil train derailment in Heimdal, North Dakota, that released more than 96,000 gallons of crude oil into the environment in May 2015. In the Kansas accident, a Union Pacific Railroad foreman died after being struck by a remote-controlled train during switching operations at the ... Read More

Investigators Look At Mechanical Failures, Engineer Health In Deadly NJ Transit Train Crash

The NJ Transit commuter train that crashed inside the Hoboken terminal in September, killing one and injuring more than 100 others, had faulty brakes and multiple other safety defects in the months before the crash, maintenance records show. In January, railroad inspectors found that a “hand brake gear pin” on one of the train cars was “completely out,” New York City’s Pix11 reported. Three months later, inspectors found brake damage and at more than a dozen other safety defects. In April, another hand brake was found to be in disrepair. Federal investigators are still working to determine why the Pascack ... Read More

Fuel Train Derailment Forces Evacuation of Minnesota town

A Union Pacific Railroad train hauling butane and propane gas partially derailed in southern Minnesota Friday morning, forcing the evacuation of the a small town. Approximately a dozen cars of the 146-car fuel train toppled off the tracks for unknown reasons around 5:45 a.m. Two of the cars were laden with liquid propane and butane gas, both highly explosive fuels. It is not known how much of the fuel escaped, but authorities were mainly concerned with a tear in the car containing propane. Concern over the hazard was serious enough to prompt an evacuation of Ellendale, a town of about 700 ... Read More

Another Philadelphia Amtrak Crash Kills Two, Injures Dozens

Federal safety investigators were dispatched to the Philadelphia area Sunday to investigate the crash of an Amtrak train that killed two railroad employees when it collided with a backhoe on the tracks in Chester, Penn. Amtrak’s Train 89 traveling from New York City to Savannah, Ga., partially derailed when it hit the backhoe shortly before 8 a.m. just south of the Philadelphia international Airport. In addition to the two worker deaths, the impact sent more than 30 passengers to local hospitals. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Federal Railroad Administration (FAA) will head the investigation. It remains unclear ... Read More

Amtrak engineer in deadly Philly crash called for safety improvements

The railroad engineer behind the controls of Amtrak 188 when it hurtled off the tracks in Philadelphia at a high speed last month has for years been an outspoken advocate of equipping trains with automatic speed-regulating devices. According to the New York Times, Brandon Bostian, 32, has been a long-time safety-minded railroad employee, posting for years about the need for safety improvements. His rants about rail safety included one 2012 social media post blasting rail companies for their failure to install Positive Train Controls (PTCs) – devices designed to prevent precisely the type of crash Amtrak 188 was involved in. ... Read More

Preemption language must be removed from railroad regulations

The American Association for Justice is calling for a review of Bush administration regulations that it believes compromise the safety and rights of consumers who are injured in railroad accidents. The request was prompted by the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee’s nomination hearing of Joseph Szabo as the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) new administrator. Though Szabo’s nomination is not controversial, many lawmakers in the Democrat-controlled Congress believe the regulations and policies put forth by the previous administration favor big business at an enormous expense to the consumer. Preemption is the problem. Preemption is the legal premise that federal law ... Read More