Railroad tracks run throughout many of the communities surrounding metro Atlanta, moving freight and passengers, often without incident. When an incident does occur, it can involve a pedestrian being struck or a car trying to beat a train across tracks. In the rare incidence that a derailment occurs, it brings in federal investigators to determine the cause, as CBS46 reports.
The derailment occurred at about 3 a.m. Thursday morning in the Hunter Hills neighborhood of downtown Atlanta. Fourteen rail cars slammed into the back of a home of a retired Marine. At the time of the crash, the homeowner was asleep and the incident swept him out of the house. Neighbors found him in an open-air freight car with an injured leg yelling for help.
Neighbors said that it was lucky for him to survive and they’ve never experienced anything like what happened. Some described it as feeling like an earthquake and the power flickering.
By 6:45 a.m. on Friday, trains were once again moving through the neighborhood after crews scrambled to repair the rails and remove the debris from the area. Two open-air cars have been repurposed as dumpsters the workers are using to fill with the debris.
Federal investigators are working to figure out what caused the derailment. Questions are also being asked as to why homes have been built so close to the tracks. A Federal Railway Administration spokesperson states that there is no requirement for a specific distance between a home and the tracks.
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