McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

June 26, 2012

Ex-RR administrator: Crash sounds like human error

By KEN MILLER
Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY — A former Federal Railroad Administration official says early findings suggest human error led to a head-on collision between two Union Pacific trains in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

Gil Carmichael — now with the University of Denver’s Intermodal Transportation Institute — said Tuesday the railroad has a solid reputation and that the tracks and signals were likely in good shape.

The Sunday morning crash killed two engineers and a conductor. Another conductor jumped from a moving train and survived.

The National Transportation Safety Board has said one of the trains was supposed to have moved to a side track to wait for the other to pass.