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2023 Personal Injury

Georgia Leads Nation in Train Accidents, Injuries, and Deaths, Data Show

Data released by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) show that more train accidents have occurred in Georgia in recent years than any other state — even states considerably larger in area and population than Georgia. In the four-year period from 2018-2021, there were a total of 277 train accidents in Georgia. The second and third-highest were Texas and Ohio, with 263 and 256, respectively. A total of 33 people were injured and nine were killed in Georgia during that time, which was also the highest in the nation. If you are one of the disproportionate numbers of Georgians who have been injured in train accidents, a Tifton train accident lawyer can help you recover. 

Most Common Train Accident Types in Georgia 

1. Derailment 

The most common type of train accident in Georgia was derailments, accounting for 152 accidents during the period studied. Train derailments occur when the wheels of the train become disconnected from the track. They often cause part of the train or the entire train to fall over onto its side, spilling its contents — and passengers — onto the ground and causing major injuries. Derailments can occur due to broken or cracked rails, objects on the track (including vehicles), equipment failure, and human error. 

2. Other Impacts 

“Other impacts” is the FRA’s miscellaneous category for accidents that involve contact between trains or train equipment (or some portion thereof), but are not considered collisions. These types of accidents involve single cars or sections of cars that are damaged during switching, train makeup, and setting out operations. They accounted for 66 accidents during the period studied. 

3. Highway-Rail Crossing 

Highway-rail crossing accidents occur when a train strikes a “highway user” (i.e., automobile, bus, truck, motorcycle, bicycle, farm vehicle, or pedestrian) at a location where a highway and the railroad track cross. These types of accidents can be particularly devastating for those struck and result in serious and catastrophic injuries. They can be caused by train operator error, driver error, stalled vehicles, lack of warning signals, and obstructed views at railway crossings, among others. In Georgia, they accounted for 34 accidents during the period studied. 

4. Collision 

In FRA parlance, a collision occurs when one train collides with another while moving along a track. Collision types include head-on, rear-end, side, raking, broken train, and railroad crossing. These types of accidents can be particularly dangerous when they occur to passenger trains. Collisions accounted for 22 accidents during the period studied. 

5. Obstruction 

Obstruction accidents occur when a train strikes an object on the track, which could include foreign debris, a vehicle at a location other than a highway-rail crossing, or a piece of work equipment. These accidents were fairly rare during the period studied, accounting for only six. Nonetheless, obstruction accidents can easily lead to more deadly derailments. 

Contact a Tifton Train Accident Lawyer to Pursue a Claim Against a Railroad Company

Pursuing personal injury claims against railroads is difficult, but you do not have to do it alone. The best way to maximize your chances of success is to seek the counsel of an attorney with experience handling these types of cases. For more information, please contact a Tifton train accident lawyer at the Hudson Injury Firm by calling 229-396-5848 or using our online form