Shame on you CN
Posted in the Canadian National Railway Forum
#1 Feb 15, 2012
Canadian National Railway knew for an hour about a washout along tracks near Rockford but failed to notify a freight train in time to prevent a deadly derailment in 2009, the National Transportation Safety Board determined today.A Rockford woman and the unborn child of her daughter were killed as tank cars filled with ethanol erupted into flames. “There were missteps and miscommunications, procedures not followed and poor decisions,” NTSB Chairman Deborah A.P. Hersman said at the hearing in Washington, D.C. “There were multiple points where this catastrophe could have been averted but it was not.”A CN spokesman said Tuesday that the Montreal-based railroad “has implemented enhanced procedures and training as part of an ongoing commitment to operating a safe railroad.”The eastbound CN freight train derailed at a crossing in Cherry Valley on June 19. Thirteen of the derailed cars caught fire, the NTSB said.A 41-year-old woman in a car at the crossing was killed along with her daughter's unborn child. Several others were injured, and about 600 homes in the area were evacuated.Contributing to the accident was CN's failure to work with Winnebago County to develop a comprehensive storm water management design to address previous washouts in 2006 and 2007, according to the NTSB.Other factors cited by the NTSB were CN's failure to issue a flash-flood warning to the train crew and the inadequate design of the tank cars, which made them subject to catastrophic loss of hazardous materials during derailment, the NTSB found.CN has agreed to pay a total of $36.2 million to the Jose Tellez family, who sued the railroad. Tellez’ wife and unborn grandchild were killed.
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