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Train deaths in Washington state return to normal numbers

SUNDAY, MARCH 19, 2017, 1:22 P.M.

A BNSF coal train sits with one car partially off the track about one mile east of Wintler Park, in Vancouver, Wash., in 2016. Officials say train fatalities have declined to normal levels from a jump in 2015. (Ariane Kunze / AP)
A BNSF coal train sits with one car partially off the track about one mile east of Wintler Park, in Vancouver, Wash., in 2016. Officials say train fatalities have declined to normal levels from a jump in 2015. (Ariane Kunze / AP)

TACOMA – Figures released by Washington officials show that deaths on the state’s railroad tracks returned to normal levels last year after reaching a high number in 2015.

The News Tribune reports that the Washington State Department of Transportation released numbers last week showing that 13 people were killed statewide in 2016 in train-related incidents.

That’s down from 27 people killed in 2015. That year had the most train-related deaths in the state since 2011, when 29 people died.

Thirteen people were killed on the tracks in 2014 and three have died so far in 2017.

State and railroad officials say they are relieved that 2016 numbers were down from 2015 but that the ultimate goal is to have zero train-related deaths.



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