LIRR Derailment Latest Incident in Series of Commuter Train Accidents

By WRSH on January 5, 2017 - Comments off

new-york-train1Several cars on a Long Island Rail Road train derailed on Wednesday morning, injuring scores of commuters. The F.D.N.Y. has reported that 103 passengers suffered non-life-threatening injuries in the crash, the most severe being a broken leg. The accident happened at the peak of rush hour when the train, originating from Far Rockaway, Queens, and carrying 600 to 700 people, crashed into a bumper block at the end of the track at Brooklyn’s Atlantic Terminal. The train was apparently traveling at a low rate of speed at the time, which is probably why the injuries weren’t more severe. Investigators from New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority and The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are looking into the cause of the crash.

Other Train Accidents in the NYC Tristate Area

This accident comes just three months after a New Jersey Transit train crashed into Lackawanna Station in Hoboken, injuring 114 passengers and killing a woman who was waiting on the platform. Investigation into the cause of the accident created more questions than answers. According to a CBS report, transportation industry officials were “baffled” and believed that mechanical failure was an unlikely cause. However, it was determined that speed played a factor in the crash.

These accidents are just two in what seems to be a rash of injury causing train crashes that have recently occurred within the vicinity of The Big Apple. Just last spring, an Amtrak train out of New York City hit a backhoe in Philadelphia and jumped the rails. No one was killed in this crash, but 30 passengers were treated at area hospitals.

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said about a different accident that occurred in Valhalla, New York less than two years ago. In this case, a Metro-North Harlem line train careened into an SUV, killing the driver of the SUV and six train passengers. A total of 14 people were taken to the hospital and treated for their injuries, with one of those passengers sustaining critical injuries.

In 2015, an Amtrak train bound for New York City derailed in the Port Richmond section of Philadelphia, killing at least five people and injuring 140. The cause of this derailment is still uncertain.

A 2013 derailment of a Metro-North train near the Spuyten Duyvil station in the Bronx took the lives of four and caused 70 injuries. The accident occurred near a curve where the speed limit drops from 70 mph down to 30 mph. Also in 2013, two Metro-North trains collided in Fairfield, Connecticut, injuring at least 60 people.

Given today’s technology, one would think that train accidents would be a lot less common than they once were. But, it appears as if they’re here to stay as long as there’s human error and faulty design and manufacturing to plague all types of mass transportation.

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