On Tuesday, February 11, 2020, the NJ Transit Raritan Valley line experienced delays going both ways due to a collision along the tracks. An NJ Transit train collided with the trailer of a truck that was stuck on the tracks at the Cedar Avenue crossing in Middlesex, NJ. Luckily, there are no reported injuries.
NJ Transit train No. 5710 left High Bridge at around 5:51 a.m. and travelled eastbound toward New York Penn Station with an estimated arrival of 7:10 a.m., according to NJ Transit spokesman Jim Smith. The accident occurred at approximately 6:35 a.m., resulting in delays throughout the day. Commuters with tickets and passes to NJ Transit rail were allowed to ride select buses because of these delays.
Videos shared through Twitter by News 12 NJ reporter Darlene Melendez show the scene of the accident as later trains passed through the area where the truck remained hours later. The train involved in the accident was holding about 340 passengers and crew members when the incident occurred. It is incredibly lucky that everyone aboard was able to get off safely.
This incident is reportedly at least the third train accident to occur at the Cedar Avenue crossing this year. On January 3, two women were tragically killed when their car was struck by an oncoming train. The driver had been stopped on the patch of road between the two sets of railroad track that are laid out for the Raritan Valley line and Conrail. To avoid an oncoming Conrail train, the driver reversed onto the Raritan Valley tracks as an NJ Transit train approached.
On a separate occasion, a 17-year-old Middlesex high school student was sadly killed when he was struck by an NJ Transit train at that same crossing. Tuesday morning’s accident marks the third train accident to occur at this crossing in just the first two months of 2020. It is clear that the crossing’s design must be changed to improve safety for those passing through.
Train accidents can have catastrophic results and should be avoided in every way possible. While it is lucky that this accident resulted in no injuries, that is not always the case. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, “a motorist is almost 20 times more likely to die in a crash involving a train than in a collision involving another motor vehicle.” Municipalities have a responsibility to ensure that motorists and pedestrians are as safe as possible when crossing railroad tracks.
The attorneys at Block O’Toole & Murphy believe that all commuters have the right to safe travel. Our firm has a proven track record of finding justice for those who have been seriously injured in accidents caused by another party’s negligence.
Notable results include:
- $3,925,000 settlement for a pedestrian who was tragically killed by an oncoming train as he attempted to free a truck that was stuck on the tracks
- $1,500,000 settlement for a client who was injured while riding in the first car of a train that crashed into a train terminal during rush hour
If you or someone you know has been severely injured in an accident, contact the lawyers at Block O’Toole & Murphy for a free legal consultation by calling 212-736-5300 or filling out our online contact form.