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Tractor-Trailer Struck By Train On Steep Virginia Crossing

A tractor-trailer was split in half by a freight train in Virginia after it became stuck on the tracks at a notorious high-grade railroad crossing that has seen multiple similar accidents in recent years. The accident occurred Sept. 6 at the Curtis Street railroad crossing in Chester, Virginia. Dash-cam video of another driver stopped at the tracks shows the three occupants of the tractor-trailer’s cab running from the tracks as a freight train barrels toward their stranded truck. Moments later, the train rips through the trailer “like a knife in butter,” one witness told Richmond, Virginia’s WRIC 8News. The collision ... Read More

NTSB: Biloxi Bus Crash Caused By Railroad, City Safety Failures

A deadly tour bus crash in Biloxi, Mississippi, that killed four people last year was likely caused by the failure of CSX Railroad and the City of Biloxi to address a railroad crossing they knew to be dangerous, federal investigators said. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said in its Aug. 7 preliminary report of the bus crash that nearly two dozen vehicles have become “grounded” at the crossing where the bus crash occurred last year, yet neither the city nor the railroad took action to correct the hazard. On March 17, 2017, a chartered bus operated by ECHO Transportation ... Read More

Union Pacific Workers Sue Over Toxic Exposure illnesses

A dozen railroad workers are suing Union Pacific Railroad in an Omaha, Nebraska, federal court, alleging their work on trains, railyards, company shops, and tracks exposed them to cancer-causing substances in violation of federal law. The plaintiffs, all former Union Pacific employees or their estates, allege that the railroad was negligent in its failure to use “ordinary care or caution” with toxic substances in the workplace as required by federal regulations. They also claim Union Pacific failed to monitor and test its work sites for toxic substances that could sicken workers, according to the Omaha World-Herald. Union Pacific, the second-largest ... Read More

Train Crash Probes Prompt Urgent NTSB Safety Recommendations

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has issued three urgent railroad safety recommendations amid its investigation of a deadly collision between an Amtrak train and a CSX freight train in South Carolina earlier this month and another ongoing train accident investigation. The NTSB, which is charged with investigating major transportation-related accidents, makes recommendations for safety improvements based on its findings, but it does not have the authority to enact or enforce new rules. Instead, the recommendations are issued to the proper regulatory authorities. On Thursday, Feb. 15, the NTSB issued one urgent safety recommendation to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) ... Read More

Amtrak Crash Kills Two, Injures 116 In South Carolina

An Amtrak train traveling from New York to Miami collided with a freight train Sunday morning near Columbia, South Carolina, killing two Amtrak employees and injuring 116 others. The deadly crash, Amtrak’s third fatal accident since its Cascades 501 train derailed south of Tacoma, Washington on Dec. 18, occurred about 2:45 a.m. Sunday morning in the town of Cayce, South Carolina. According to CBS News, Lexington County Coroner Margaret Fisher said the collision killed Amtrak engineer Michael Kempf, 54, and conductor Michael Sella, 32. Mr. Kempf and Mr. Sella were among the 148 people aboard Amtrak 91, including 139 passengers ... Read More

Conductor Injured In Washington Derailment Sues Amtrak

An Amtrak conductor on a training run of the Cascades 501 that derailed in DuPont, Washington, Dec. 18 is one of the first people to sue the railroad as a result of the accident. Garrick Freeman, a 48-year-old Amtrak conductor, was among the 80 people injured when the train derailed as it sped into a downward curve at more than twice the speed limit. Thirteen of the train’s cars leaped the tracks on an overpass and landed on cars and trucks on Interstate 5 below. Three people were killed. Mr. Freeman, who was with the train’s engineer in the lead ... Read More

150 Train Crashes, Hundreds of Deaths Preventable With Speed Control

Railroad data obtained by the Associated Press shows that nearly 300 people have been killed and several thousand maimed in 150 U.S. train crashes that could have been prevented had rail companies installed the speed-control technology that federal safety investigators have been advocating for decades. According to the AP, National Transportation Board (NTSB) investigators first pushed for “automatic train control” in 1969, after two Penn Central commuter trains crashed into each other in Darien, Connecticut, killing four people and injuring 43. Since that crash, there have been 298 deaths, 6,763 injuries, and $385 million in property damages in train crashes ... Read More

Amtrak Train Derails in Savannah Station

An Amtrak train hauling more than 300 passengers and crew from Miami to New York City derailed at the Savannah, Georgia, station Wednesday night. Amtrak spokesman Jason Abrams told the Associated Press that the derailment occurred as the Silver Meteor train #98 was backing into the Savannah station. The last three cars of the train – a baggage car and two sleeper cars – left the tracks but remained fully upright. No injuries were reported. The derailment occurred as a historic snowstorm was pummeling the Savannah area and other parts of the Eastern Seaboard. Passenger Joel Potischman, who was traveling ... Read More

Amtrak Sped Excessively Before Deadly Washington Derailment

The Amtrak train that derailed south of Tacoma, Washington, Monday morning, killing three people and injuring dozens of others, was traveling nearly three times the speed limit, federal investigators said. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said that Amtrak’s Cascade Train 501 was speeding at 80 mph in a 30 mph zone as it entered an overpass in DuPont, where all but one of the train’s 14 cars careened off the tracks. At a news conference late Monday, NTSB board member Bella Dinh-Zarr said that investigators had retrieved the train’s event data recorder from the rear locomotive and are using ... Read More

Multiple Deaths, Injuries in Washington Amtrak Derailment

An Amtrak derailment in DuPont, Washington, Monday morning has resulted in multiple deaths and injuries. Authorities say at least three people are dead after part of Amtrak’s newly opened Cascades 501 line careened off an overpass near Mounts Road in Dupont and landing on the southbound lanes of Interstate 5 below. Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma is serving as the main hospital receiving casualties from the train crash, but the hospital did not disclose how many patients it has seen. A spokesman for Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia told The Seattle Times that it had received about a ... Read More