Dangerous Crossings are Highlighted by FRA
We know railroad crossings are dangerous places for users and railroad workers alike. Now the Federal Railroad Administration has published a list of the country’s most dangerous crossings that reveals just how hazardous grade crossings can be.
The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has published a new website which it says will “serve as a one-stop shop to help drivers, pedestrians, and law enforcement stay safe around the nation’s more than 200,000 railroad crossings and 140,000 miles of track.”
The list includes some of the most dangerous crossings in the nation. More than 10 incidents have occurred at each of 15 of the most hazardous crossings in states including Georgia, Arkansas, New Jersey, Indiana, and Tennessee. The FRA considers safety data at more than 200,000 railroad crossings across the country. While deaths have not occurred at all of the 15 crossings in question, the potential for deaths and injuries at these locations is significant.
Transportation secretary Anthony Foxx suggested knowing where the most dangerous crossings are will help the FRA to channel resources to where they are most needed. He said.
Knowing where repeat injuries and fatalities occur helps states focus their time and resources on areas where they can have an impact. Preventing incidents and fatalities at railroad crossings is one of the department’s top priorities, and I urge states to work with FRA to achieve this life-saving goal.
Progressive Railroading reported that many of the crossings that have been highlighted are at busy, multiple lane intersections in areas which have “significant truck traffic.” Warnings are interconnected with traffic lights, Progressive Railroading reports.
This February, the FRA sent out an updated safety advisory called on states to partner with railroads to make sure that the interconnected systems have taken current highway traffic patterns into consideration.
Crew members can often become the victims of derailments in grade crossing accidents. In cases of poorly designed crossings or errors, they may have grounds to file FELA claims against railroads.
The FRA noted that progress has been made in cutting the number of grade crossing incidents. In 2015, the freight-rail grade crossing collision rate fell by about 7 percent compared to the previous year and there was a 45 percent reduction on 2000. Crossing wrecks can cause many types of injuries including PTSD. If you have been injured on in a grade crossing accident, call us at (866) 455-6657.