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Rail News: Union Pacific Railroad

NTSB cites signal issue in UP train collision

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has determined that Union Pacific Railroad's failure to conduct a risk assessment of a new control point (CP) signal installation contributed to a collision of two UP trains in 2014, the agency announced in a report last month.

The incident occurred in September 2014 near Galva, Kan., when an eastbound UP train collided with the side of a westbound UP train, according to the NTSB's executive summary of its investigative report.

The NTSB determined that the accident's probable cause was the green signal at CP 207 masking the red signal aspect at the east end of the Galva siding at CP 208, which resulted in the crew of the eastbound train passing the red stop signal and colliding with the westbound train.

The westbound train was entering a siding, but had not cleared the main track when it was struck by the eastbound train. Five multi-platform intermodal cars derailed from the westbound train, and two locomotive units and four multi-platform intermodal cars derailed from the eastbound train.

UP estimated about 200 gallons of diesel fuel leaked from the fuel tank of one of the derailed locomotives. No crew members were seriously injured and no fire resulted from the incident, the report stated.

An examination of both trains' mechanical equipment after the accident did not find any mechanical issues that would have contributed to the accident.

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