A collision between a New Jersey Transit train and a truck that occurred minutes away from Newark sent two people to a hospital and caused delays for commuters during Friday rush hour. The accident happened in Garfield, New Jersey, when a truck that was carrying plastic pellets got stuck on the railway at Hobart Place around noon. Apparently, a part of the truck that acts as a pylon when a trailer is not connected got attached to the track and prevented it from moving away from the railroad. The 51-year-old truck driver was able to escape his cab prior to the collision and did not suffer any injuries.
Meanwhile, two people sustained injuries in the accident. The train’s engineer, who endured shoulder injuries, and a passenger were taken to Hackensack University Medical Center. Another passenger who complained of injuries refused medical care.
A NJ Transit spokesperson stated that it was not known how long the truck has been on the track. No one called 911, which may have helped avoid the crash. Signs on the track also state that it has low vertical clearance and prohibits low-boy trailers. Investigators were looking into whether this particular truck should have been passing through the crossing or should have taken a different route.
While Vehicular accidents involving trains and trucks do not frequently happen in Newark, New Jersey, commercial vehicles can often be involved in accidents with other vehicles, including cars. Nonetheless, there can be severe consequences if a truck accident does occur. The size and weight of trucks can cause significant damage and physical injuries, whether the collision involves a train or sedan. Because of the risks, truckers and truck fleet owners need to ensure that defective auto parts will not contribute to a potential accident.
Of course, in such cases an investigation like the one above may play an important role in developing evidence to support a claim. If defective parts or improper maintenance can be linked to an accident, those injured might be able to obtain compensation to help cover medical expenses, lost wages and more.
Source: The Record, “Service restored after NJ Transit train and truck crash in Garfield suspending Bergen Line,” Abbott Koloff, Matt McGrath & Kim Lueddeke, June 21, 2013