Approximately 76 people were injured—some critically—when two Metro-North passenger trains, heading in opposite directions, collided in Bridgeport, Connecticut in May. The accident occurred when a train heading from New York City to New Haven derailed and struck the other train.
National Transportation Safety Board investigators have been focusing on a broken rail as a possible cause. Two days prior to the collision, Metro-North track inspectors checking the New Haven Line had described weak ballast, erosion, problems with ties, unstable rails and loose embankments on the line where the trains crashed.
According to Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal, who recently presiding over a hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee looking into railroad safety issues, the inspectors’ report “shows many defects on that stretch, any one of which could have caused a derailment.’’ One of the defects in the inspectors’ report was: “Track 4, Catenary 734 insulated joint, hanging ties, pumping under load,” referring to vertical movement of the track when a train passed over it. This was at the site of the derailment on May 17.
James P. Redeker, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Transportation, told the Senate hearing that investment levels in the Northeast Corridor — the rail system between Washington and Boston — “fall far short of the levels needed to address repair backlogs and meet future needs.’’ The repair backlog in Connecticut that needs to be addressed in the near term includes catenary replacement, four major moveable bridges between Greenwich and New Haven, as well as numerous fixed bridges on the line, and replacing the signal system, according to Redeker.
To successfully bring a claim involving a railroad company or train collision, clients need an experienced, educated attorney on their side. They also need an attorney with the financial resources to take the case to trial. At Heygood, Orr & Pearson, we have tried hundreds of cases to verdict and have settled hundreds more. In 2010 alone, we negotiated settlements of personal injury and wrongful death claims totaling more than $50 million.
Heygood, Orr & Pearson also has the financial resources to handle personal injury cases from start to finish. In fact, there are many instances in which we invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in a case in order to take it to trial. At Heygood, Orr & Pearson, we are committed to achieving justice for our clients, whatever the cost.
Contact the lawyers at Heygood, Orr & Pearson for your free case evaluation and to learn more about your legal right to compensation. You can reach us by calling toll-free at 1-877-446-9001, or by filling out a free legal consultation form.