While car accidents may be unfortunately common in the United States, another major concern is present, especially in the state of Illinois. Accidents involving trains and on railways happen all too frequently in Illinois, due in part to the fact that the state has so many miles of track. According to a recent news article, preventing these devastating accidents has become a top concern for railway safety experts.
Illinois is one of the few states across the country that must address rail-safety issues due to the numerous crossings present in the state along its many miles of train tracks. Illinois is among the top five states for most railway accidents and related deaths, according to a coordinator from Illinois Operation Lifesaver. Railway safety experts are focusing their efforts on Illinois since there is a higher chance of accidents happening involving trains within the state. They recently met to talk about risks posed by Illinois railways as well as discuss potential solutions for the thousands of railways crossings in Illinois that are located on private property.
The University of Illinois hosted a week-long seminar focused on these and other issues, which also included driver behavior at railway crossings, safety initiatives, preventing the occurrence of suicides on tracks, results of accident investigations, and identifying obstacles for automobiles. Issues involving vehicles are of particular concern, since it is estimated that vehicle drivers are responsible for accidents involving trains about 95 percent of the time, due to poor judgment. Train engineers who spot vehicles in their path can attempt to bring the train to a stop, but can do little more. Further, it may take them a mile or more to come to a stop, depending on the size of the freight and its speed.
While many of these accidents occur on public crossings, some also occur on the crossings located on private land. Placing warning signs or lights at these crossings could go a long way in preventing accidents involving workers or private contractors who may work for the landowner but who are not as familiar with the property. Additional safety measures could include posting information at the crossings that includes the name of the railroad and contacts in case of an accident or emergency.
It is equally as important, however, to educate the public. Drivers and others who travel around railway crossings should be aware that a train could be traveling down the tracks at any time, and people of all ages should be familiar with the risks associated with railway crossings.
Accident Injury Attorney
If you or someone you know has been involved in a train accident or other type of crash, it is important to contact an experienced DuPage County personal injury attorney who can protect your rights. Contact Mevorah Law Offices LLC today to schedule a consultation. We serve clients in DuPage, Cook, Kane, Lake, McHenry, Kendall, and Will County.
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