On Nov. 9, a person was killed after being hit by a train in Memphis. The train collided with the person at the corner of McLemore Avenue and Dunnavant Street, according to WMC Action News 5. Although this incident involved a pedestrian, there are many occasions when motorists and trains meet under sometimes fatal circumstances.
Myth: It is Easy to Outrun a Train
Drivers often believe that they can judge how far away a train is and therefore outrun it. This is not true. The train’s size in the distance can easily fool a person into thinking it is much further away than it is, and that it is moving more slowly than it actually is. Consider this: A train that is traveling at 30 miles per hour needs a half-mile to stop completely. When the train is going 60 miles per hour, it needs a full minute and a half. Do not risk a collision with a train.
Myth: Driving Around Railroad Gates is Fine if You Do Not See a Train Coming
Some people believe that if railroad gates are down and they do not see a train, it is safe to drive around the gates – even if the lights are flashing red. The fact of the matter is that if you come up to gates that are lowered and/or lights that are flashing, you should stop or you risk a serious train accident. If that is not enough, consider that you can get a ticket for driving around a lowered gate.
Myth: You Can Move Your Vehicle in Time
If your vehicle gets stuck on a track, you may assume that you have plenty of time to move it. You may be tempted to try and try to get the car moved, even as the train approaches. If you jump out of the car at the last minute, you risk serious injury or death when your car goes careening. If you must run away from the car at the last minute, run toward the train – not the way the train is going.
Myth: Only One Train Passes at as Time
It is also common for drivers to assume that if they see one train coming, that is the only train coming. This is often false. It may be that it is a multi-track crossing and another train could be coming on the same track. If a driver crosses the tracks after seeing one train pass, they are at risk of being hit by another train.
This is why you should not only wait for the last car of a train to pass before crossing, but you should wait to look both ways to make sure that it is clear. Of course, you should also wait for any flashing lights to turn off or gates to lift.
If you are injured in a train accident that you believe was the fault of another person or party’s actions or inactions, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.