After the Amtrak derailment on Monday, people in Louisiana and around the country are wondering who is at fault and who will be responsible for the casualties. The accident resulted in deaths and a large number of injuries, not to mention property damage to the tracks and vehicles on the highway. Occurring during the morning rush hour, the derailment made national news and has attracted a lot of interest as well as questions as to what exactly happened.
CNN reports the train, carrying 86 passengers, came off the tracks after going around a curve at 80 mph, which was 50 mph faster than the speed limit in that zone. Thirteen of the cars came off the track, some falling onto the busy highway below. Injuries were reported by at least 100 people, and three of the train passengers were killed. The NTSB is investigating the crash, examining aspects such as the train mechanics, operations, track maintenance and human performance. Questions remain as to whether the engineer was distracted due to another conductor or if the absence of positive train control are factors in the crash.
No matter what answers the investigators find, FindLaw estimates Amtrak will be the recipient of multiple lawsuits in the near future. Known as a common carrier, Amtrak is responsible for adhering to strict regulations regarding the safety of its passengers. Speeding is a direct violation of these directives, and when it results in an accident the company can be sued for injuries. Hopefully this investigation will help all train carriers improve their safety features and procedures.