Earlier this week, another substantial CTA train crash occurred, this time involving what investigators and others are referring to as a “ghost train” because the train was supposedly out of service and driverless. Nevertheless, the ghost train exited the Forest Park rail yard and past multiple track switches before colliding head-on at approximately 20 miles per hour with a Blue Line train at Harlem Avenue. Over 40 people were passengers on the Blue Line train, and approximately 30 of those people were taken to the hospital for various injuries of different degrees.
The obvious question that continues to baffle investigators, led by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), as well as the CTA itself, is how could this “ghost train” have been allowed to operate?
More specific questions remain, such as: Where were the safeguards to prevent an unauthorized CTA train from leaving the rail yard? Why didn’t the train’s friction brakes prevent the train from leaving the yard? Why didn’t the train’s “dead man control” stop this runaway train?
This incident also raises terrorism-related concerns, which is why the Federal Joint Terrorism Task Force is also involved in this investigation.
The CTA, as an operator of a mass-transit train system, is held to a heightened duty of care to protect passengers from its own negligence or reckless conduct. Clearly, the CTA failed to exercise its duty by allowing this “ghost train” to cause a potentially catastrophic train crash. Those injured as a result of this crash are encouraged to contact a top Chicago CTA train crash lawyer to discuss further action.
For a Free Consultation with Passen & Powell’s CTA Accident Lawyers, call us at 312-527-4500.