The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the federal agency that investigates major transportation-related accidents and makes safety recommendations to state and federal lawmakers, recently reported on its investigations into several train accidents, one involving a collision with an automobile. It concluded that the railroad companies in some cases did not fulfill their duties to maintain their equipment in safe working order. In a fatal collision between two trains, the NTSB found that one train failed to reduce its speed despite several warning signals. In a press release issued on March 8, 2013, the NTSB reported on two train accidents that occurred in 2012. An Amtrak train collided with a car at a railway crossing in Illinois on February 28, 2012. The Associated Press quoted officials who said that the warning lights were not activated at the time, and that the crossing arms had not lowered. The collision killed the automobile's driver. The NTSB's investigation concluded that Union Pacific employees, who were performing maintenance on the warning system, had removed it from the crossing for inspection and testing. When the collision occurred, the mechanism for activating the warning lights and the crossing arms was therefore deactivated, and the driver of the automobile had no warning of the approaching train.
The following case is successfully handled in Connecticut courts by Attorney Levin.