Questions Linger Over Railroad Crossing Crash in West Virginia That Killed Truck Driver and Injured 23 on Train
A spate of recent high profile crashes on railroad crossings has revealed how vulnerable passengers and crew members can be in accidents involving trucks.
Just last week a loaded log truck collided with a sightseeing train in West Virginia, killing the truck driver and injuring 23 on the train.
Danny Kimble of Durbin, W.Va., was later identified by the Pocahontas Times as the driver who was killed in the crash in the mountains. Two rail cars ended up on their side when the crash brought an abrupt end to a leaf sightseeing tour on Cheat Mountain, WV.
At least six of those who were injured in this crash were hospitalized in a serious condition, according to media reports.
Randolph County Sheriff Mark Brady told reporters two of the train’s passenger cars flipped on their sides after the impact on a rail crossing with a mountain highway. The collision crushed the truck, killing Mr. Kimble at the scene.
This accident raises many questions. It’s unclear why the truck driver failed to stop. Reports from the scene suggest flashing lights were working on the crossing, but there are many factors that can render a railroad liable in an accident like this. Likewise, a truck driver or a truck company can he held liable.
Over the past few years I have seen many tragedies on railroad crossings and have represented railroad workers in FELA cases who have been injured in derailments.
In 2011 a truck crashed into an Amtrak train on a grade crossing in Nevada, killing six people and injuring many more.
Dozens of lawsuits were filed after this accident. Plaintiffs sued the trucking company, claiming the brakes failed o work properly on the truck while litigation was brought against the railroad, alleging crossing gates came down too late.
A railroad accident in Texas last year left four military veterans dead and others injured on a parade float. Wrongful death lawsuits have been brought against the railroad operator Union Pacific.
If you are injured in a crash on a railroad crossing you may have a case against the railroad operator in certain circumstances, including:
- Malfunctioning equipment such as gates and lights
- A failure to cut back foliage, blocking a view of oncoming trains
- The conductor’s failure to blow a horn or otherwise warn of an approaching train
The railroad injury/FELA law firm, Cooper Hurley, handles railroad worker’s injuries and passenger injuries on rail crossings in Virginia, North Carolina and West Virginia, as well as automobile, truck, and motorcycle injuries and slip and fall cases, wrongful death and medical malpractice. John Cooper and Jim Hurley have over 40 years of combined experience in railroad related injuries.
The firm is recognized by other lawyers as “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell, a national attorney rating service, for our top level of legal skill and highest ethical standards. If you need help or advice about a serious injury, please call us at (757) 455 -0077 or contact us through this website.