According to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), four people have died in Tennessee from accidents involving trains so far this year. One of those was a railroad employee. Another 30 people were injured.
There are numerous unprotected railroad crossings around the state, so drivers and pedestrians have to be aware of where they are and how to avoid accidents. In fact, according to an LA Times article on unprotected railroad crossings, “more than 80% of all railroad crossings are not protected by lights and gates” nationwide.
In elementary school, you were probably taught to “stop, look and listen” before you cross the street. This same advice applies to unprotected railroad crossings. Don’t just assume there’s nothing coming because trains are fast, heavy, and deadly.
Drivers are sometimes careless near railroad crossings and believe they can “beat the train” or don’t heed the signals. But there are many instances where the driver is being cautious and some other factor was at fault in a train accident:
• Train was traveling too fast
• Signal was faulty or broken
• Track was damaged
• Train engineer didn’t sound warning whistle
• Driver couldn’t see the train due to an obstruction
Car wrecks involving trains and railroads are the most deadly type of accident. If the injuries aren’t fatal, they are usually very serious and often lifelong.
If you’ve been in an accident involving a railroad, it’s important to find an experienced Tennessee railroad accident attorney. Contact Gilreath & Associates today for a free consultation.