A vehicle went airborne and crashed into a steel beam early Monday morning in Gallatin, causing one person to suffer fatal injuries.
Per a report by WKRN.com, the accident occurred at around 1 a.m. on Red River Road in Sumner County. An investigation by officers with the Gallatin Police Department revealed that the driver may have lost control of the vehicle, causing it to hit railroad tracks at high speed and then become airborne.
The vehicle then crashed into the beam near a gas station. The impact of the collision was so severe that emergency responders say they found the vehicle’s engine more than 20 feet away from the accident scene.
The male driver of the vehicle was pronounced dead at the scene, while his female passenger was transported to a local hospital to receive treatment for her injuries.
It’s unclear what caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle, and investigators are currently working to determine if drugs or alcohol played a role in the crash.
Tips for Driving Safely near Railroad Tracks
There are many railroad crossings on major roadways throughout Middle Tennessee. In addition to being places of potentially severe accidents due to collisions with trains, railroad tracks can also be dangerous if drivers cross them while traveling at high rates of speed or without taking proper care and precautions.
To stay safe while driving near or over railroad tracks, always follow these tips:
- Slow down and be prepared to stop any time you approach railroad tracks.
If you see a railroad crossing in the distance, begin slowing down and be prepared to stop, even if you don’t hear a train whistle or see flashing lights and the crossing barriers lowering. Reducing your speed when approaching railroad tracks is important not only to protect your tires from the impact of hitting the tracks, but also to give you plenty of time to react in case a train is approaching.
- Never try to beat a train.
No matter how close you are to the tracks, if you hear and see the warning system indicating that a train is approaching, wait for the train to completely pass through the area before you drive across the tracks. Trying to beat the train can put you at significant risk of an accident, as your vehicle may be damaged by the crossing arms and by the train itself.
- Get out of your vehicle and move to safety if it becomes disabled on railroad tracks.
If anything happens that causes your vehicle to become disabled on or near railroad tracks, get out of it immediately and call 911. Staying inside your vehicle is extremely dangerous, as is attempting to push it off the tracks. Move to a safe location far away from the tracks and call 911 to report the incident. Rescue workers can safely move your vehicle off the tracks and take it to a mechanic’s shop where it can be repaired.
- Be patient at crossings with multiple tracks.
Some railroad crossings have multiple tracks, and after one train passes through heading in one direction, another train may immediately follow heading in another direction. If you see that the train has passed but the crossing barriers or warning signals are still active, continue waiting before crossing, as another train may be on its way.
Matt Hardin Law’s team of Nashville car accident attorneys knows that accidents involving vehicles and train tracks are all too common throughout Middle Tennessee. Whether they’re caused by vehicles driving over train tracks at high speeds, or by vehicles being struck by trains themselves, both drivers and passengers are at risk of suffering serious injuries during these types of crashes.
If you were hurt in an accident at a railroad crossing or at any other location on a roadway in the mid-state area, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation, especially if the crash was caused by another person’s negligence. Get in touch with our legal team today to find out how we can put our two decades of experience to work on your behalf. Just dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.