NTSB Faults Parade Plans In Train Collision That Killed Four Veterans

Nov 5, 2013

Federal investigators have faulted the lack of safety planning by parade organizers and Midland in a deadly accident in which a train rammed a truck towing a parade float with veterans and their wives.

Four veterans were killed, and 11 veterans and their wives were injured in last November's accident during the annual salute to vets.

The five-member National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday placed responsibility for the collision on parade organizers and city officials.

The NTSB board says:

-- The Midland accident could have been prevented if the city required parade organizers to have a safety plan.

-- After the first few years the parade's route was changed from one that didn't cross Union Pacific's tracks to a route that did cross the tracks.

-- Parade organizers previously would alert the railroad to their plans and police were stationed at the highway grade crossing. Those precautions were dropped by last year.

-- In the early years of the parade, organizers also obtained parade permits from the city. But last year, no permit was obtained in violation of city regulations.

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