The information in this report is preliminary and will be
either supplemented or corrected
during the course of the investigation.
On April 13, 2019, about 5:40 p.m., eastern daylight time, a CSX Transportation
(CSX) mechanical employee (carman) was struck and killed by a CSX remote-control
locomotive (RCL) Y292-13 that was being used to switch railcars at the north
end of the Wauhatchie Rail Yard in Chattanooga, Tennessee. (See figure 1.) At
the time of the accident, the temperature was 70°F and the visibility was 10
miles or more. Earlier in the morning, light rain occurred in the area.
1: Diagram of CSX Wauhatchie Yard
(northernmost section): tracks 11 (W11) and 14 (W14), north lead rail, and
approximate striking point.
Prior to the accident, the struck carman had just completed work on
track 11. The work he had been performing had required him to apply blue flag
protection by placing a blue sign on track 11.
The carman got into his truck and drove it across the north lead
and parked it near the switch for track 11. The carman exited his truck and
walked to track 11 by crossing the north lead to remove the blue signal sign that
he had placed between the rails. After removing the blue signal sign, he then
returned towards the track 11 switch to remove his lock.
The RCL operator, who was riding on the rear of the third railcar,
was moving the RCL off track 14 and onto the north lead when he saw the
carman’s truck cross the track in front of his RCL. The operator stopped the RCL
to allow the truck to clear the tracks. The RCL operator, after waiting a short
amount of time and seeing no activity ahead, resumed moving the RCL. During
this move, the RCL reached a speed of 9 mph.
The NTSB investigators reviewed video images recorded by a
stationary yard camera. The investigators saw that the carman, who crossed the
north lead at a 45-degree angle with his back towards the RCL, was struck and
Parties to the investigation include
the Federal Railroad Administration; the CSX Transportation; the International
Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers; the Brotherhood
of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen; and the Brotherhood of Railway Carmen.