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Sacramento Train Derailment Injures 27

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August 23, 2019
Edward Smith

Sacramento Train Derailment Injures 27

A train derailment occurred in the evening hours of August 22 in Sacramento when a light-rail collided with a maintenance train near the station at Winter Street. The area where the accident occurred is parallel to Del Paso Park and Roseville Road. The crash was reported to have caused harm to 27 people, including two who were described as having moderate injuries. Thirteen people were transported to area hospitals, while the remainder were treated by emergency medical personnel at the accident scene. One of those taken to the hospital was an employee of Regional Transit and was said to have suffered a leg injury. 

What a Lawyer Can Do for You

When an unexpected accident occurs, the injured party and their family are thrown into a time marked by physical pain and financial worry. Being compensated for your injuries, at least financially, makes it easier. In order to structure a case against the at fault party, it is necessary to prove negligence. Our firm dispatches an investigative team to the accident scene to search for evidence. We interview witnesses and obtain video footage of the crash to prove fault. In a train collision, our investigators use other effective parameters to determine fault. Once all the evidence has been garnered, our legal team works to build a strong case so that our clients can obtain the compensation they deserve. It is important to call us as soon as possible after the accident before evidence is lost or covered up by the defendant. 

Details of the Train Derailment

The passenger train consisted of two cars and crashed into the maintenance train, which was carrying three employees. According to Devra Selinis, a Regional Transit spokesperson, the maintenance train was working in that area at about 9:40 in the evening when the train derailment occurred. Forty Sacramento County firefighters and 15 ambulances were at the scene to handle the train derailment. 

Aftermath of the Accident

The passenger cars were left upright by the train derailment but appeared to be separated by around 15 feet of rails. Passengers and employees were taken to an area used for staging near the neighborhood of Hagginwood at about 10:00 p.m. In the morning, it was apparent that the driver window of the passenger train was pushed out with the maintenance train nearby. Delays are expected throughout the day and a bus bridge was placed to take train passengers from the station at North Highlands to the stop at Marconi-Arcade. Authorities with the National Transportation Safety Board will be conducting an investigation into the cause of the train derailment.

Previous Accident

Since Regional Transit began operating in 1987, there has only been one other collision between trains. This occurred in 1999 when 30 people suffered injuries in an accident in midtown after a train was involved in a head-on collision with another one that was disabled. This collision was blamed on the control center failing to determine their locations and the use of multiple radio channels.

How to Prove Fault After a Train Derailment

Proving fault after a train accident involves factors that are specific to this type of collision. Evidence that is useful includes:

  • Event data recorder: This device allows investigators to have a bird’s eye view of events as they transpired prior to the crash. This includes the train’s speed. Whether the train operator used their horn and when the brakes were applied are also recorded. 
  • Video: Trains today have video cameras that record what the conductor sees in real time. For instance, if someone is stuck on the tracks, the video will capture that as well as efforts to avoid a collision. In many instances, it takes an inordinate amount of time for a train to stop, especially if it is traveling at a high rate of speed.
  • Maintenance records: Lack of maintenance to the tracks, crossings and train can lead to an accident. All are expected to be inspected at regular intervals to make sure they are in good condition. Tracks must be inspected to make sure they are fit for their classified speed limit. In addition, all gates and warning signs must be checked on a regular basis. 
  • Dispatch: Since tracks are used by trains heading in the opposite direction throughout the day, dispatchers must have a record of all trains, the times they are active and their cargo. Since the dispatcher is in communication with the engineer throughout the trip. He is able to advise the engineer of any problems along the way. Dispatch records can be examined by your attorney for inconsistencies that may have led to the accident.

Defendants in a Train Accident

Your attorney can file a lawsuit against the train company, its manufacturer and the engineer. It is important to remember that since train companies are considered public entities, the time frame to file is different. Your attorney can make sure all documents are filed on time.

Sacramento Train Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento train accident lawyer. An experienced train accident lawyer can help you get fair compensation for your injuries. Contact me for my free and friendly advice at (916) 921-6400 in the Sacramento area. If you are calling from somewhere else in Northern California, my toll-free number is (800) 404-5400. An online contact form is available too.

Since 1982, I’ve helped defend the rights of Northern Californians to obtain the compensation they deserve when injured through negligence. In addition to train accidents, I handle all kinds of traffic collisions, wrongful deaths and catastrophic injuries

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