FRA issues safety advisory on MOW-equipment grade crossing accidents

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WASHINGTON — Railroad regulators say new safety recommendations will help enforce rules-compliance and situational awareness following a 2015 fatal crash between a maintenance-of-way machine and a motor vehicle at a grade crossing.

The Federal Railroad Administration says Safety Advisory 2016-01 recommends that railroads and contractors review, update, and following all rules and procedures governing equipment moves.

The recommendations are a response to a January 2015 fatal accident in Gilroy Calif., when an on-track roadway maintenance machine as part of a large Union Pacific rail gang collided with a motor vehicle at a public grade crossing. The driver of the motor vehicle died as a result of the collision.

As part of the administration’s investigation, it determined that between January 2010 and November 2015, maintenance-of-way vehicles and automobiles collided in 187 accidents. The accidents caused two deaths and 68 injuries.

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