Friday, July 31, 2009

Train accidents decline 29.4% through May

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The Federal Railroad Administration released preliminary railroad safety statistics for the first five months of 2009 on Friday, and they showed strong improvement across the board.

A total of 4,164 accidents/incidents were reported in the January-May period, down 29.5% from the corresponding period in 2008.

Train accidents declined 29.44% to 736, collisions were down 24.0% to 57, derailments fell 33.2% to 509, and yard accidents were down 35% to 371.

There were 344 fatalities in all categories, a decline of 8.8% from last year. Trespassing accounted for 168 fatalities, down 8.7% . Grade crossing fatalities declined 7.4% to 87. There were nine employee fatalities, compared with ten in the 2008 period.

Track causes were blamed for 239 accidents, down 31.9% from 2008; human factors for 333, down 37.4%; equipment for 117, down 16.4%; and signal causes for 22, up 22.2%.