Rail Fatalities

Rail Fatalities

Monthly data, not seasonally adjusted

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Improving safety is the top priority of the United States Department of Transportation. The number of railroad deaths (excluding public highway crossings) has decreased over the past decade, from 632 in 2000 to 535 in 2009. Likewise, over the same period, efforts to improve safety and build grade separations have helped decrease fatalities at public highway grade-crossings from 305 in 2000 to 161 in 2009.

Over the decade of 2000-2009, 70% of all rail-related fatalities (including public highway crossings) were trespassers.

Rail Fatalities May-11 May-12
Rail Fatalities (excluding highway vehicles at public crossings) 50 59
Percent change from same month previous year -27.5 18.0

NOTE: Rail fatalities excludes occupants of highway motor vehicles killed at public highway-rail grade crossings. Rail-highway fatalities are counted under highway fatailities in order to eliminate double-counting.

SOURCES: U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration, Office of Safety Analysis, Operational Data Tables, Tables 4.01 and 4.06, available at http://safetydata.fra.dot.gov/OfficeofSafety/ as of August 2012.