Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Railroad accidents decline

Written by  Luther S. Miller, Senior Consulting Editor
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The latest Federal Railroad Administration accident report, covering this year's first four months, again shows strong safety gains for railroads.

The number of freight train collisions declined 26.5% to 38 compared with the same period last year. Derailments were down 24.5% to 389. The number of yard collisions dropped 18.8% to 389. There were only three reported railroad employee deaths, compared with seven in the 2011 period.

The 738 large and small reporting railroads informed the FRA of a total 3,294 accidents/incidents, a 9.6% drop from the 2011 period.

"Rail-related" accidents were another matter. Trespasser deaths increased 12.6% to 185, and motor vehicle fatalities at grade crossings increased 7.87% to 83.