In 2010, there were 106 train-vehicle collisions in Louisiana, including 13 deaths and 65 injuries. It is a 34 percent increase from the previous year and ranks Louisiana fourth in the nation for railroad crossing deaths. Louisiana ranks third for the most injuries in the study conducted by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). In the United States overall, there were 2004 train-vehicle collisions, resulting in 261 deaths and 810 injuries in 2010.
In the past, FRA inspections found almost 1500 safety flaws at Louisiana rail crossings, including the following issues:
· Disabled warning systems
· Some of the crossings were not inspected between 2003 and 2007
· Some crossings were not inspected for over 10 years
· Warning systems failed to properly activate at least 179 times between 2003 and 2007
A spokesperson for Operation Lifesaver, a rail safety education organization, said the increase in collisions might be due to the recovering economy, which created more traffic on the roads. The organization plans to increase its efforts to educate drivers on rail crossing safety.
Louisiana’s railroad industry successfully blocked a 2009 attempt at a statewide safety program to allow the Public Service Commission to hire five safety inspectors and a supervisor.
Train-vehicle collisions are just one of many accidents that can cause severe injuries. A New Orleans accident lawyer can help you recover fair compensation for your automobile accident injuries and suffering. Contact a New Orleans accident attorney for a free case evaluation.