Easton Truck Driver Dies at Railroad Crossing

August 27, 2020

David Nezekiah Howell, a truck driver from Easton, PA, tragically lost his life when the tractor-trailer he was driving was struck by an oncoming train on Thursday, August 20th. The crash happened at the intersection of Pittsburgh and Blockdale streets at approximately 5:20 in the morning. Find out how the accident occurred and who can be held liable in these types of accidents below.


What Happened

After the initial investigation, it was determined that the tractor-trailer was in the process of transversing the railroad crossing when he noticed the train coming toward him. According to reports, Howell attempted to back the vehicle up but was unable to avoid the collision. Reports also show that the truck was trying to make a sharp turn onto the crossing.

The collision was so forceful that it pushed the tractor-trailer into the corner of a building, with the cab having been spun into the back of it. The driver died at the scene.

Unfortunately, this is not the first time an incident like this has happened at the railroad crossing. Back in May of this year, two people were injured when a train clipped their van.

Local residents claim that there are no warning lights or gates at the railroad crossing. Paul Oden, a resident of the building the tractor-trailer slammed into asked, “How many more is it going to take before they do something?”

Who is At-Fault for a Railroad Crossing Accident?

Determining who is at-fault for a railroad crossing accident depends on the details of the situation. The owner of the railroad track is responsible for ensuring that the tracks are safe and not damaged, while the company that operates the train is responsible for the safe speed and control of the vehicle. In this particular case, where this is insufficient signage and a lack of proper warnings, it is typically the city or county where the crossing is to ensure that these safety protocols are met. If there is a lack of signage and an injury or death results, they will more than likely be held liable for the damages.

These types of accidents are tragic and in many cases, completely preventable. If your loved one passed away as a result of negligence, it’s important to hire an attorney who is not only experienced in handling these types of claims but one that is compassionate and understanding about what your family is going through. Surviving family members have two years from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim. At Goodrich & Geist, P.C., we are here to help you and your family get through this emotional time. We will file the wrongful death claim on your behalf, deal with the insurance company and hold the responsible party accountable for their negligence so you can focus on your family.

Contact a Pittsburgh Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Wrongful Death Case in Pennsylvania

If your loved one passed away due to someone else’s negligence in Pennsylvania, you have rights to file a wrongful death claim. The skilled and compassionate attorneys at Goodrich & Geist, P.C. represent clients in Pittsburgh and the surrounding Western PA counties. Call (412) 564-4770 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 3634 California Avenue, Pittsburg, PA, 15212.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.