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Truck accidents with trains, safety issues to be addressed

Truck accidents don't only happen on the roads. In fact, trains can be impacted by a driver's poor decisions as well. A March 11 report has come out to discuss the importance of addressing grade-crossing safety issues and derailments, so accidents can be avoided.

The goal of zero injuries, accidents, or fatalities at railroad crossings still hasn't been reached, and sometimes that does have to do with drivers. For instance, a truck stalling on the tracks, a driver trying to cross the tracks at the last minute, or someone simply not paying attention and hitting the side of a passing train can all cause train collisions and even derailment. During a conference in Washington, D.C., the acting administrator for the Federal Railroad Administration discussed how the rail industry has become much safer than in the past, but some issues are once again on the rise.

For example, in 2014, the number of accidents that took place at grade crossings increased by 9 percent, with fatalities raising to 16 percent. One recent accident involved a train that struck an SUV at a crossing in New York. That resulted in six deaths. Another train accident in California happened when a train collided with a truck trailer. That accident alone resulted in 27 injuries and one death.

While the rail services have stepped up to help make crossing safer, part of the problem may always be drivers who aren't obeying the law. Taking time to look before passing through a crossing or waiting for a train to pass can be the difference between an accident and a safe situation.

Source: Progressive Railroading, "FRA to announce steps to address grade-crossing safety issues, Feinberg says" Mar. 11, 2015

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