Friday, January 22, 2010

Settlement and Policy Change Reached In Train Deaths

Too often railroads, and the public bodies who regulate them, turn a deaf-ear to the physical condition of the thousands of miles of railroad track that lace local communities. In this case, it was more than a deaf-ear, the railroad and public body simply closed their eyes. And, because they did, tragedy struck.

In July of 2008, two boys were hit and killed by a Maryland light rail train. The boys were struck by a northbound train that was on southbound tracks. The cause of the tragedy: vandalism on the northbound tracks and the train operator took his eyes off the track at a critical moment and could not explain why.

Recently, the families of two boys received a $1.5 million settlement from the state of Maryland. Along with the settlement, the Maryland Transit Authority has agreed to create new policies regarding trespassing and single-track operations.

To read more, see Michael Dresser and Julie Bykowicz, Baltimore Sun 01/21/2010, Baltimore Sun

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