An 87 year old woman dies Friday after her car was hit by a Tri-Rail train in Palm Beach Florida. The accident happened at the Yamato Road crossing. According to police reports, the driver was traveling east on Yamato Road at approximately 8:30 in the morning. Although the railroad crossing gates were down, the driver drove her red sedan through the gates. As her vehicle crossed the tracks, it was hit by a southbound train. Police told a local news station that the driver was the only person in the vehicle. Although nobody on the train was reported injured, the accident closed the area to traffic for over six hours.
Car train accidents are surprisingly a common occurrence, and needless to say, they often result in serious injuries or death. In fact, according to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), this driver is the fourth person to have been killed in a train accident this year in Palm Beach County alone. The FRA data states that the other three victims were pedestrians. Even more alarming, according an investigative report published by the Palm Beach Post, one quarter of all reported Florida pedestrian rail deaths happen in Palm Beach County. The report, which covers the period of 2011 – 2013, shows that although the majority of people cross railroad tracks at busy intersections in vehicles, more than half of the other deaths have occurred along stretches of railroad located between crossings.
Just recently in August, a 62 year old man was killed in a Palm Beach County train related accident. He was killed when his vehicle was hit on the Florida East Coast Railway located north of Atlantic Avenue. In June, another man was killed on the same railway tracks, but in Boynton Beach. According to police reports, this incident has been ruled a suicide. And in May a woman was fatally struck by a train in Boca Raton.
Furthermore, in car and train or pedestrian and train accidents, it’s not just the driver or walker who is hurt. In January, 22 Tri-Rail passengers had to be taken to a hospital after their train collided with a garbage truck that had stalled on the tracks located near Sixth Avenue South in Lake Worth. In this case, it is important to note that the driver of the truck was able to get out of the vehicle just seconds before the train hit – otherwise he would probably have become another statistic in the Federal Railroad Administration’s database.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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