Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Blog

Posted On: June 23, 2009

Deadly Train Crash in Rockford, Illinois - 1 Dead, 3 Injured

In Rockford, Illinois a woman was killed Friday night after a Canadian National Railway Co. freight train derailed, according to the N.Y. Times. The victim was in a car waiting for the train to pass by. The rail cars were carrying ethanol, and when 18 cars derailed there was a large explosion. Hundreds of people from nearby homes had to be evacuated.

At one point 14 train cars were on fire, and 5 were still burning the next morning. The flames lasted though Saturday. 74 cars on the train were carrying ethanol.

Three other people at the scene were able to flee from their cars and survive, however they were severely burned. They were taken to area hospitals for treatment. The woman who died, Zoila Tellez of Rockford, also tried to flee, but only made it 20 feet and then collapsed.

The Chicago area train crash being investigated by the Federal Railroad Administration, Canadian National, and the National Transportation Safety Board.

The Associated Press has reported that the NTSB was taking a look at high water levels in the area of the crash as a possible cause. There was heavy rainfall in the Chicago area during the days prior to the derailment.

It has not been reported if the estate of the the deceased or the burn victims have retained personal injury lawyers to pursue a civil claim