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Woman Killed in Car Accident with Train was Former Mrs. America

Tennessee authorities have said that the woman who was killed in a car accident involving a train in Humphreys County was a former Mrs. America. The accident happened around 1:00 p.m. behind the Walmart on Walton Drive in Waverly when the victim, Susan Goodman, 63, was trying to cross the train tracks in her SUV. While crossing the tracks, Mrs. Goodman’s vehicle was struck by a CSX train. The train was comprised of two locomotives, 31 rail cars, and was on its way to Savannah from Memphis.

Upon impact with the train, Mrs. Goodman was ejected from the SUV and later died at the scene. The victim won the Mrs. America pageant back in 1983 and was known around the community for her volunteer work. She was the executive director of the United Way in both Humphreys and Benton Counties, and she is survived by her husband and two children.

Investigators at the scene noted that the railroad track where the accident took place does not have gate arms and is only equipped with a sign that says “Railroad Crossing.” The accident remains under investigation and so far no charges have been filed.

Tennessee Car and Train Accidents

According to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, the year to date total of fatal traffic accidents across the state is 180. For fatal car accidents that happen with trains, drivers and passengers of vehicles are most often hurt or killed at unprotected crossings. These crossings have no lights or signals to indicate that a train is approaching, and with over 140,000 railroad crossings in the United States almost one quarter of them are unmarked.

The Federal Railroad Administration reports that a train collision or derailment happens once every 90 minutes. Over the last decade, about 3,000 railroad crossing accidents have occurred. There are many causes for car accidents involving a railroad crossing. Some of the most common causes include failing to maintain the area around the tracks, buildings or vegetation blocking views, improperly working equipment (broken bells, whistles, crossing gates, etc.), or a lack of equipment at the crossing, all of which can lead to accidents that result in serious injuries or death.

Compensation for Accidents

Car accidents that involve trains and railway crossings are almost always more severe than a typical traffic accident with another vehicle. Given the size, speed, and power of a train the occupants in the vehicle commonly face much more serious injuries or death. If you or a loved one has been involved in this type of accident, you may have a claim for compensation. Damages for car accidents involving trains and railway crossings can include:

  • Medical expenses;
  • Lost wages;
  • Disability;
  • Pain and suffering;
  • Emotional distress;
  • Loss of enjoyment of life;
  • Wrongful death;

…and other costs that are associated with the accident.

Call a Tennessee Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident with a train or in a railway crossing around the Nashville area, let the experienced attorneys at Calhoun Law, PLC help. Call the office or contact us today for a free and confidential consultation of your case.

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