Rail crossing stop signs faded at Md. crash site

BALTIMORE (AP) — Stop signs at a rail crossing where a train and trash truck crashed in a Baltimore suburb were faded and one was hung upside down and facing away from the road, according to a preliminary report on last month’s derailment and explosion.

The National Transportation Safety Board released the report on the May 28 derailment in Rosedale on Wednesday.

It says the two-track highway grade crossing where the crash occurred has no active warning lights or crossing gates. It is marked with crossbuck signs and yellow, nonstandard stop signs. The paint on both signs had faded significantly. The signs were also displaced from their mountings.

The driver of the truck, 50-year-old John J. Alban Jr., did not stop at the crossing, the report said.

A CSX freight train hit the truck on the right side near the rear axle. The train had two locomotives, 15 empty cars, and 30 loaded cars. Four of those cars contained hazardous materials, including sodium chlorate, and the first 15 cars derailed, the report said. It was the third serious derailment in the U.S. within the month of May.

After the crash, a fire broke out, which led to an explosion. The report said the blast broke windows and damaged siding on buildings as far as a mile away.

Alban was seriously hurt in the crash. The report said a police officer who responded and three people working at a building adjacent to the railroad tracks also were injured, one seriously.

Baltimore County Police said Wednesday that the crash in still under investigation and no charges have been filed.

A woman who answered the phone at Alban’s residence Wednesday said he was not home.

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