Bad eyesight likely contributor in fiery Oklahoma train crash

06/18/2013 // West Palm Beach , Florida, US // JusticeNewsFlash // Justice News Flash // (press release)

Tulsa, OK – A fiery train crash that left an engineer and two other railroad workers dead was reportedly likely caused by his failing eyesight. As reported by the Associated Press (AP), a doctor told the National Transportation Safety Board Tuesday that the engineer had suffered from serious problems with his vision, including glaucoma and cataracts, and had undergone multiple procedures to correct the issues prior to the June 24, 2012 crash.

The engineer had reportedly been guiding one of the trains involved in the collision in the Oklahoma Panhandle in spite of his vision issues.

Dr. Mary Pat McKay is quoted by the AP as stating to the NTSB during a hearing in which the engineer’s failing eyesight was deemed a probable cause of the crash, “Had the railroad tested the eastbound engineer’s vision in 2010, medical records demonstrate that he would have failed … any of the standard color vision tests.”

A spokesperson for Union Pacific stated company records suggest the engineer had passed all required vision tests.

Deborah Hersman, NTSB chairman, is further quoted by the AP as stating, “Railroads must pay extra attention to monitoring employees with chronic medical conditions who hold safety-sensitive position… If an employee can put their life or the lives of others at risk, it is imperative that others take the necessary and appropriate action.”

The operator’s name has been withheld.

Justice News Flash delivers the latest in Tulsa railroad accident news.

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