Table 2-39. Railroad System Safety and Property Damage Data (Excludes highway-rail grade-crossing accidents)

Table 2-39. Railroad System Safety and Property Damage Data (Excludes highway-rail grade-crossing accidents)

Excel | CSV

  1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
Fatalities 785 575 584 454 599 567 551 602 577 530
Injuried Persons d17,934 50,138 58,696 31,617 22,736 12,546 10,948 10,227 10,156 10,304
Accidentsa 8,095 8,041 8,205 3,275 2,879 2,459 2,443 2,397 2,575 2,768
Train-miles (millions)b,c 839 755 718 571 609 670 671 677 683 712
Rates per 100 million train-miles                   
Fatalities 94 76 81 80 98 85 82 89 84 74
Injuries N 6,640 8,180 5,540 3,740 1,870 1,630 1,511 1,487 1,446
Accidents 970 1,070 1,140 570 470 370 360 354 377 389
Property damage(current $ millions)121.6 177.4 267.4 179.3 198.7 189.2 212.3 210.4 R233.1 242.3

a Train accidents only; excludes highway-rail grade-crossing accidents.
b Train-miles in this table differ from train-miles in the vehicle-miles table in Chapter 1. Train-miles reported in Chapter 1 include only Class I rail (see glossary for definition), while this table includes Class I rail, Group II rail, and other rail. For example, in 1999 Group II rail accounted for 75 million train-miles, and other rail for 25 million train-miles. Moreover, the vehicle-miles table in Chapter 1 includes only train-miles between terminals and/or stations, thus excluding yard and switching miles. In 1999, Class I yard/switching train-miles totaled 70 million train-miles. Note that commuter rail safety data are reported in the rail mode and the transit mode. Commuter rail train-miles are included in Class I rail and Group II rail in this table.
cA train-mile is the movement of a train (which can consist of many cars) the distance of 1 mile. A train-mile differs from a vehicle-mile, which is the movement of 1 car (vehicle) the distance of 1 mile. A 10-car (vehicle) train traveling 1 mile would be measured as 1 train-mile and 10 vehicle-miles. Caution should be used when comparing train-miles to vehicle-miles.
d 1970 injuries not comparable to later years due to change in reporting system.

KEY: N = data do not exist; R = revised; U = data are not available

NOTE: This table includes information for both freight and passenger railroad operations.

SOURCES:
Fatalities, injuries, accidents, and property damage:
1970-96: U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration, Office of Policy and Program Development, Accident/Incident Bulletin (Washington, DC: Annual issues), tables 14 and 15.
1997-98: Ibid., Railroad Safety Statistics Annual Report 1998 (Washington, DC: July 1999).
1999: Ibid., Internet site http://safetydata.fra.dot.gov/objects/bull99.pdf, as of November 28, 2000.
Train-miles:
1970-90: U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Transit Administration, National Transit Database (Washington, DC: Annual issues), form 406.
1990-99: U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration, Internet site http://safetydata.fra.dot.gov/OfficeofSafety/Prelim/1999/r02.htm, as of July 10, 2000.