November 14, 2009– Scotty L. Davis, 44, of Campbell, Missouri, died while attempting to cross the train tracks on County Road 231, just 3 miles Northeast of Campbell where he resided. At 9:45am, Mr. Davis was struck by a General Electric Locomotive Train. The Highway-rail intersection he was attempting to cross had a warning sign posted, but no lights or gates. Scotty Davis was pronounced dead on the scene at 10:26 am, by Dunklin County Deputy Coroner James Towell. He was transported by the coroner to Landess Funeral Home in Campbell, Missouir. This fatality marked the 60th fatality in Troop E for the year.
According to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Office of Safety Analysis, there are 6,818 rail crossings in the state of Missouri. Of those, 2,403 of them have “passive warnings” typically a railroad warning sign with no lights or barricades. In 2008, 46 accidents involving highway-rail crossings were reported and 10 resulted in fatalities. From January to August of 2009, there had already been 26 accidents involving highway-rail crossings. Many of these accidents occur in Missouri because of the increased number of rural areas where train crashes with vehicles are more common.
Although these sites may be clearly marked, these rural locations can make judging distance and speed of a train very difficult. Drivers often think they have plenty of time to cross, when in reality they do not. Without a crossing light to warn drivers, or a barricade to stop them from crossing, many drivers think it is safe to proceed, but don’t realize the speed at which the train is going to cross their path. This was probably the error that Scotty Davis made and now he too has become one of the statistics added to the list of fatalities for the year of 2009.
Several attorneys throughout the state of Missouri have represented clients and their families in civil suits against the train companies in order to compensate them for their losses due to injury or death. David Payne of Green County is one of those attorneys. He claims that “when a train crash is caused by a train company’s negligence or error, they are responsible for covering associated medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering”. To see if you or a loved one may deserve compensation, you can contact David Payne at 417-847-7516 for a no obligation consultation to see if you have a claim.
Sources: Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) Office of Safety Analysis, http://safetydata.fra.dot.gov/officeofsafety/publicsite/Query/stateoverview.aspx
David Payne, Attonry at Law, http://www.missouriinjuryattorneyblog.com/2009/07/train_accident_results_in_deat.html