Many are familiar with the tragic freight train derailment in June 2009, where water runoff on train tracks in Cherry Valley, Illinois (just outside Rockford) caused a train to derail. Leaking ethanol then caused thirteen of the train’s cars to catch fire, injuring many and killing two.

The National Transportation Safety Board (“NTSB”) recently released its report on the matter according to a Chicago Tribune article found here, bringing several disturbing facts to light.
First, and foremost, the report indicates that Canadian National Railway (“CNR”) knew for approximately an hour before the accident that there was a complete washout on the tracks, but did not contact the train in time to stop it.
Compounding this failure to communicate is the fact that, on two prior incidents in 2006 and 2007, similar washouts had occurred near the tracks in question that CNR was aware of. Further complicating things, the NTSB suggests that CNR could have (and probably should have) done more to communicate with Winnebago County to develop a comprehensive storm water management system in light of the two prior washouts.
Unfortunate situations such as these bring to light the necessity for transportation companies and local governments to work together to come up with solutions to recurring problems such as these to protect the public at large and avoid costly tragedies.
You can contact us here 24/7/365 if you have any questions and to learn how we may be able to help you analyze your particular situation should you or your loved ones, friends or family be unfortunately involved in any accident whether tragic or minor. We would be sincerely honored to help you with your matters – large or small.

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