(Bolingbroke, Georgia – December 7, 2020)
A Georgia motorist was seriously injured after his dump truck was struck by a Norfolk Southern freight train. The collision occurred at the unguarded private crossing leading into the CW Matthews Contracting Co. facility in Monroe County, Georgia. The private crossing is also near the intersection of Dixie Highway and Wren Circle. The driver was transported to a local hospital with serious, but not life-threatening injuries.
According to railroad supplied records, Norfolk Southern Railway Company owns the railroad crossing at issue. The average speed for freight trains at this crossing is 40 mph. A daily average of four Norfolk Southern freight trains travel over the private crossing at an extreme and severe angle. There is also a large tree and dirt embankment in the northwest quadrant of the crossing which obstructs a motorist’s view of oncoming trains.
Despite the severe bend in the tracks leading up to this crossing, and the sight obstructing vegetation and embankment, there are not active warning devices to warn motorists of the obscured trains. It is also unclear if the train horn was blown in sufficient time to provide warning to the truck driver, as Norfolk Southern internal rules do not consistently require train horns to be blown at private crossing.