Parade Planners Come Under Fire Over Railroad Crossing Crash in Midland, Texas That Killed Four
As a Virginia Railroad accident lawyer, I take a close interest in the topic of rail safety and accidents on railroads throughout the country.
Last year a terrible accident occurred in Midland, Texas in which a Union Pacific freight train crashed into a parade float carrying wounded veterans. Four people were killed in the accident and many more were injured.
In the wake of this accident, personal injury lawyers asked many questions about who was to blame. Crossings are dangerous places. A malfunctioning crossing or the failure of an engineer to sound a horn, can render a railroad liable for injuries
A lawsuit was filed against Union Pacific last year. MySanAntonio reported the railroad crossing in Midland was designed to have more warning time than officials said was given when the wreck occurred.
However, the organizers of the parade have also come under fire. The National Transportation Safety Board has recommended enhanced safety at parades after finding the probable cause of the accident was poor planning on the behalf of Midland and a nonprofit that organized the carnival, the Wall Street Journal has reported.
Several lawsuits have been filed by victims and their families that seek compensation from Union Pacific and the trucking company that employed the drivers of the floats, but both companies deny liability. The NTSB suggested the warning lights and bells met federal regulations.
In the aftermath of this tragedy, The National Transportation Safety Board recommended that U.S. cities adopt enhanced safety measures for parades. One of the regulations would be for cities and counties to require parade organizers to create written safety plans that would include provisions for safety briefings, the screening of float drivers, and the advanced notification of railroads or other organizations that control potential safety hazards. The NTSB is also urging cities and counties to create standard operating procedures for parades, reported the Wall Street Journal.
The Virginia railroad injury/FELA law firm, Cooper Hurley, handles railroad injury accidents and car accidents on rail crossings in Virginia, North Carolina, and West Virginia. If you need help or advice about a serious injury, call us at (757)455-0077 or visit our website. “When It Really Counts, Count on Cooper Hurley.”