MIDVALE, UT – A TRAX commuter train crashed into an empty passenger car that was sitting on the tracks on November 6, derailing the train and injuring two passengers and a railroad employee in Midvale, Utah. Midvale is located in Salt Lake County, Utah in the north-central part of the state about 12 miles south of Salt Lake City.
The accident occurred around 8:45 p.m. in the 8000 block of 150 East and 8000 South near State St in Midvale. A northbound train carrying six passengers crashed into the back of an empty rail car sitting on the tracks. The stray car became decoupled from the rear of another northbound train that had just passed through the area earlier that evening.
The train was moving at about 40 mph when the collision occurred. The operator hit the emergency brake as soon as he saw the errant car which managed to slow the train down before colliding with the car.
Two passengers were injured along with the train conductor. The injuries were reported to be minor and no one was hospitalized as a result.
The TRAX commuter rail system is managed by the Utah Transit Authority (UTA). So far there is no explanation why the crash occurred.
The UTA is investigating the accident as to why the car became disconnected from the first train and why nobody seemed to notice that the train lost a car or why the oncoming train did not receive any notice or warning to be able to avoid the crash.
Blog post by Gordon, Elias & Seely, a FELA lawyer and Utah railroad injury lawyer who publishes train accidents and FELA legal news from across the United States.