Man is Hit and Killed on Railroad Tracks in Tucson, Arizona
As former student of the University of Arizona, I take a keen interest in news stories from Tucson.
I was at Tucson in the early 1980s when I studied for a B.A. I went on to study law at Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Michigan, but still have a love for Arizona.
I was, therefore, saddened to read about the death of a pedestrian on railroad tracks at 7th Ave and 7th Street in Tucson last week. The pedestrian was later identified as 56-year-old Robert E. Cole.
He was struck and killed on Friday morning when he was apparently crossing the railroad tracks and was hit by a westbound train.
We read about pedestrians being hit by trains with an alarming regularity. Recently, USA Today reported on how rail-safety advocates and federal authorities are trying to determine how to reduce deaths involving trains and pedestrians, which far outstrip deaths in collisions between trains and vehicles.
Over the past decade, the number of deaths involving trains and motor vehicles has dropped 42 percent to 248, USA Today reported. Over the same time frame, deaths involving pedestrians have fallen 6 percent to 434, according to the Federal Railroad Administration. “That’s (incidents with pedestrians) the No. 1 cause of death in the railroad industry,” FRA spokesman Rob Kulat said.
Rail-safety advocates say they are particularly concerned about teenagers killed accidentally by trains in hangout spots on or near the tracks. “We are working so hard to try to figure out a way to turn this around,” said Marmie Edwards of Operation Lifesaver, an international rail-safety advocacy group, in the USA Today report.
Trains have become increasingly quiet in recent years, meaning pedestrians on the tracks are less likely to realize they are coming.
At Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers we represent people who have been injured on the railroad and the families of those who have died. Pedestrians on the tracks will often be judged to be liable, but drivers who are injured or killed by trains on a grade crossing, may have a case against the railroad if a crossing is poorly maintained or malfunctioning. Call Cooper Hurley at 757.455.0077 or see CooperHurley.com.