The Texas Department of Public Safety has confirmed a fatal car accident involving a train in Iowa Park, Texas. The collision occurred at approximately 10:15 p.m. on Friday, October 13, 2017. The collision occurred near the intersection of West Smith Avenue and Johnson Road. The railroad track crosses Johnson Road approximately 25 yards before the intersection with West Smith Avenue. There are retractable railroad gates near the tracks, but it is unknown at this point whether they were activated as the train approached. There is a residential property located near where the collision occurred, but there is no report yet that there were any witnesses. Iowa Park Police and Fire, Wichita County Sheriff's Deputies, Department of Public Safety Troopers, and railroad officials were all called to the scene to investigate. The driver was reportedly operating a Dodge SUV. Unfortunately, the driver of the vehicle has perished.
On June 28, 2016, two trains barreled into one another near Amarillo, Texas. Each train was carrying two crew members. While one crew member was able to jump to safety, the three others tragically died.
On Tuesday, two BNSF freight trains collided head-on while travelling on the same track near the town of Panhandle, Texas near Amarillo. The collision left a heap of charred wreckage that burned for hours, fed by the trains' diesel fuel. One crew member managed to jump from one of the trains prior to the collision and escaped with non-life-threatening injuries, but three other crew members remain missing.
Railroad workers in Texas and throughout the United States have a right to be concerned about their safety. Last week, a website devoted to news about the Eagle Ford shale oil field in Texas posted a story about BNSF railroad workers' concerns for their safety. They say that their long shifts create unsafe working conditions.
On Monday, May 18, 2015, four passengers of Train 188 sued Amtrak in federal court in Philadelphia for injuries suffered from the crash that occurred while the train was in route from Washington D.C. to New York City. Additionally, two other suits were filed Monday, one in federal court in Manhattan and the other in state court in Newark.
One of the deadliest train derailments since 2000 happened in Philadelphia on May 12, 2015. According to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the Amtrak train was traveling over twice the speed limit allowed for that portion of the track. The engineer lost consciousness after the crash and has no memory of any events whatsoever after attempting to reduce the speed coming into the curve (where the derailment occurred).
In Philadelphia, an Amtrak train crashed and killed seven people. Over 200 passengers were injured. Investigators are trying to determine why the train derailed while rounding a curve. The speed limit just before the curve is 70 mph. The speed limit on the curve is 50 mph. One source claims it is believed the train was traveling in excess of 100 mph, which is about twice the 50 mph speed limit for the curve it was in.
The family of Ellen Brody has filed a notice of claim against the Metro-North Railroad, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Westchester County, and the Town of Mount Pleasant, NY for failing to install safety precautions at a dangerous railroad crossing. The attorney representing the family has stated that he expects to file a lawsuit in the coming months. The Brody family claims that the drive up to the intersection did not have proper lights and signs to give drivers any warning of the rail tracks. The notice states that the lack of warning at the rail crossing where the collision occurred is in violation of federal standards. Additionally, the state Department of Transportation had set aside $130,000 for added safety lights and signs. Yet no precautionary upgrades occurred at the Commerce St. Intersection, where Ellen Brody lost her life.