Unsafe highway and road accidents
can involve multiple factors. For example, about 4:31 a.m. central
daylight time on June 18, 1998, a westbound Northern Indiana Commuter
Transportation District two-car passenger train struck the second
semitrailer of a long combination vehicle that consisted of a tractor
pulling two flatbed semitrailers loaded with steel coils at a
highway-rail grade crossing near Portage, Indiana. When the vehicles
collided, the second semitrailer broke away from the first
semitrailer and was dragged by the front of the train, while the
single chain, securing a steel coil to the second semitrailer broke.
The released steel coil, weighing about 19 tons, entered the train
through the front bulkhead of the lead car and moved into the
passenger compartment. Three fatalities and five minor injuries
resulted from the accident. Damages were estimated to total $886,000.
The National Transportation Safety
Board determined that the probable cause of the collision between
Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District train 102 and a
long combination vehicle (truck) at the National Steel
Corporationís Midwest Steel grade crossing was ineffective action
by Federal, State, and private agencies to permanently resolve safety
problems at the Midwest Steel grade crossing, which they knew to be a
The major safety issues addressed
were the safety at private grade crossings, the design of the Midwest
Steel grade crossing, the conspicuity of the long combination vehicle
semitrailer, the crashworthiness of the Northern Indiana Commuter
Transportation, and the District railcars.
investigations of accidents such as this, the Safety Board can make
recommendations to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
and others. Those injured may also pursue civil claims against the
driver, their company, and others. Civil claims can afford injured
persons and their familiesí compensation for their injuries, pain
and suffering, and other loses.
claims involving highways can involve complex legal, technical, and
safety issues. The following are a few important legal, factual and
evidentiary matters that should be considered when evaluating a
all factors involving a road or highway taken into account when
evaluating an accident?
there evidence of other similar accidents occurring at the
the accident properly investigated by an impartial agency?
anyone charged with the accident?
the road properly marked?
the road properly engineered?
the road properly constructed?
the road properly maintained?
officials know of a problem with the road, but failed to take any
is important that an experienced legal team evaluate all highway
accident claims. Complex legal, factual, and evidentiary issues may
be involved. If you, a friend, or loved one are hurt in an accident,
you should take immediate steps to protect your or their interest. Do
not compromise your rights by making statements to the press,
insurance investigators, potential defendants, their representatives,
and do not sign anything. Consider the suggestions in our accident
guide, and call us immediately. We are here to help. At Larry King,
P.C., we recognize the unique issues pertaining to your claim. You can call us at (757) 595-8100
seven days a week, 24 hours a day, everyday of the year.
We also offer a free legal-infoline service, and you can now contact
us on this web site by using the following Personal Injury Contact form. We are
committed to doing the extra things it takes to help our clients.