Published on:

When Trucks and Trains Collide …

photo-200x300This past November, a semi-truck driver caused a major collision in Norcross, Georgia. Failing to heed the clear warning at a railroad crossing that prohibited tractor-trailers from driving on the tracks, he made a dangerous attempt to cross and got stuck on the tracks. He and his passenger were pulled from the truck by local police officers just before an oncoming train struck the truck. The impact caused debris to be strewn across the area. Miraculously, no one was harmed or injured in this collision. A tragedy was prevented by the fast and effective work on the part of the local police. After the crash, Gwinnett County Fire came on scene to help with the clean-up. The contents of the truck belonged to customers of a moving company … which likely caused some additional issues for both the trucking company and the driver. This type of collision involving trains and trucks are dangerous not only to the truck driver and the train passengers and engineer, but to anyone in the vicinity. Other drivers, pedestrians and bystanders can be seriously injured due to these crashes.

In Los Angeles this past September about 20 people sustained injuries when a commuter train crashed into a tractor trailer that was stuck on the tracks. The truck driver was not injured as he attempted to get his truck off the tracks. Witnesses said the truck may have already been on the tracks when the railroad crossing warnings began to sound and the gates went down.

In December of last year, a slow-moving vintage Christmas train with St. Nick himself on board, which was carrying children stopped for a while when it hit a truck that was improperly crossing railroad tracks. St. Nick and his wife visited with the children, while they waited for authorities. The pickup truck driver admitted he had been on the phone when he hit the train. He apologized and thankfully he sustained only minor injuries and none of the children or other passengers were harmed. The local railroad representative called these types of accidents “common.” It is shocking to realize just how often these train and vehicle collisions occur.

Just last month in Salt Lake City, Utah, a train slammed into a FedEx truck. Amazingly, there were no serious injuries in this crash either. In this accident, there was no indication that a train was coming. Generally, the system in Utah is intended to protect in ice and snow conditions or power outages which are intended to cause the signal and crossing gates to default to a down position. An investigation is underway, but it is thought that a railroad worker reset the default which then allowed the gates to be in the up position, when they should have been down.

When large trucks and fast-moving trains collide, they can cause serious injuries and property damage. This past week a train and truck crash resulted in serious injuries to the truck driver. Still under investigation in the Cincinnati area, the driver was helicoptered to a Dayton hospital. His truck apparently crossed into a down positioned railroad gate and flashing lights. He hit a train in the process. It is not yet known why the driver did this … perhaps he fell asleep or had a medical emergency.

Scholle Law posts regularly to keep our readers informed about safety issues. Whether you are driving or walking, it is good to be aware of the potential dangers when crossing over railroad tracks. When you need legal help, we are here to guide you and help assess your situation at no cost to you. Please contact us for a free evaluation of your injury or accident. Our legal team represents accident victims with tenacity and preeminently rated legal skills.