Train accidents, including derailments, collisions, fires, and crossing accidents can happen for a number of reasons, including driver error and equipment malfunction. Over the past several weeks, details have begun to emerge that help shed some light on what caused a massive train derailment that took place in the Bronx, New York in the early morning hours of December 1. The Metro-North train derailment left four people dead and injured 60 others.
During the course of the accident investigation, several questions have been raised about the train’s engineer, William Rockefeller, who admitted that he was in “a daze” as the train raced into the curve. According to the NTSB, the train was traveling at the dangerous speed of 82 mph, when it should have been travelling at 30 mph.
The NTSB investigation shows that the brakes were not fully applied until five seconds before the engine at the rear of the train stopped and, by that time, the front cars had sped off the tracks.
The Los Angeles Times reports that NTSB investigators found no problems with the speed sensors, brake controls, or emergency brake. What is especially alarming is that the NTSB has said that the train derailment could have been avoided if the train had been equipped with recommended technology that automatically slows speeding trains.
The NTSB investigation is still ongoing and the agency says that it has yet to interview the train’s passengers.
The Need for Implementation of Enhanced Safety Technologies
Political leaders and safety advocates say that the train derailment demonstrates the need for enhanced train control technology on the nation’s railroads. Such technology would automatically slow or stop a train that is exceeding speed limits or is on a collision course with another train.
The Los Angeles Times reports that railroads are supposed to have this technology installed by 2015, but many train companies, including Metro-North, have been pushing for a deadline extension.
Contact a Chicago Injury Lawyer Today
The Chicago train accident lawyers at Ankin Law Office, LLC are committed to helping the injured passengers of trains obtain full and fair financial recovery after a public transportation accident. Train crashes and other mass transit accidents often involve complex issues regarding liability, and there may be multiple possible defendants. Moreover, because mass transit accidents frequently involve a large number of victims, a class action lawsuit may be appropriate to settle issues of liability and damages. Accordingly, it is important to consult with an attorney who focuses on complex accident and injury cases, as well as class action lawsuits.
At Ankin Law Office, our experienced Chicago mass transit lawyers focus on representing the victims of train accidents, bus accidents, and other mass transit accidents. We are well-versed in the legal complexities and requirements of class action lawsuits, as well as the complicated factual and legal issues that come into play in a train accident lawsuit. We are dedicated to helping the victims of mass transit accidents obtain full and fair financial recovery.
If you have been injured in a train or bus accident, do not hesitate to contact Ankin Law Offices at (312) 600-0000 to schedule a free consultation with one of our knowledgeable Chicago accident and injury lawyers.