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Yesterday’s CTA train crash at O’Hare  International Airport station calls serious question to the policies, procedures and safeguards in place to protect passengers and other members of the public from catastrophic injury or death.
Of the more than 30 people injured and sent to the hospital, fortunately none of the injuries were considered life-threatening, at least according to officials. The question remains: How did this crash happen, and what must be done to ensure something like this does not happen again? Early reports suggested that the CTA train operator fell asleep at the controls, causing the train to crash into the O’Hare station. According to the president of the Transit Union, Robert Kelly, the CTA train operator admitted that she was “tired” after the crash. Investigators will look at the operator’s work schedule and hours of service leading up to this crash to see how it impacted her stamina.
National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigators will also investigate the speed of the train just before the crash occurred.
Early reports do not suggest the train was speeding, but rather that it failed to slow down and obviously stop. CTA trains are generally equipped with a safety mechanism known as automatic train control, which automatically slows down or stops a train if it goes through a red signal or is going too fast. This automatic braking system should have been triggered here to slow the train and warn the operator.
Passen Law Group has successfully represented several people seriously injured in crashes with CTA buses and trains.
After sus­tain­ing per­ma­nent injuries in an auto­mo­bile acci­dent, I hired Passen Law Group to rep­re­sent me. An undated photo shared by NTSB via Twitter on Tues., March 25 shows rail cars involved in the CTA accident at the Blue Line O'Hare station.
Chicago Fire Department firefighters brought ventilation fans to the CTA O'Hare Station, where a train derailed a day earlier. Metal gates and a tarp cover the O'Hare CTA Blue Line Station as NTSB and CTA investigators work the scene of yesterday's train derailment.
NTSB Investigator-in-Charge Ted Turpin updates reporters on Monday's train derailment at the O'Hare CTA Blue Line Station.
CTA Blue Line riders disembark shuttle buses from O'Hare International Airport at the Rosemont station the day after a Blue Line train derailed and landed atop an escalator at the airport.
NTSB Investigator-in-Charge Ted Turpin updates reporters at the O'Hare CTA Blue Line Station on the train derailment. Workers place signage to inform commuters about bus shuttle centers at a CTA Blue Line train station at O'Hare International Airport. Police control the Blue Line platform at O'Hare International airport where a Blue Line train derailed early today. A Blue Line train sits on an escalator at O'Hare International Airport after it derailed and overran the platform this morning. Police control the Blue Line platform at O'Hare International Airport where a Blue Line train overran the stop. A CTA Blue Line trains sits on an escalator at O'Hare International Airport after it jumped the landing platform early today. CTA Blue Line riders are directed to buses At the Rosemont CTA station near O'Hare International Airport after a CTA train derailed and crashed into the CTA O'Hare Station platform, running part way up the escalator. A commuter arrives to the closed CTA Blue Line station at O'Hare International Airport where a train derailed and hit a platform at this station. CTA workers help Blue Line passengers at the Rosemont station board buses to O'Hare International Airport. Blue Line passengers at the Rosemont station make their way to shuttle buses going to O'Hare International Airport.
Christopher Bushell, right, CTA Chief Infrastructure Officer, speaks to the media as Brian Steele spokesman with the CTA looks on, during an update with the media regarding a CTA Blue Line train derailment which hit a platform at O'Hare International Airport — Jose M.
A Blue Line train jumped over the bumper post at O'Hare station and proceeded more than halfway up the escalator. Northbound Red Line trains were delayed at 87th Street station due to debris on the tracks caused by an accident on the adjacent Dan Ryan Expressway. Southbound Red Line trains were rerouted to the elevated track due to debris on the tracks at Lake Street.
Brown and Purple Line Express trains were running with delays, due to Red Line trains running "over the top" because of the debris on tracks at the Lake Street subway stop.

Due to the accident at the O'Hare station, Blue Line service is suspended between Rosemont and O'Hare. The accident occurred just as workers further south on the Blue Line were finishing up the first piece of work on the $492 million Your New Blue station and track upgrade project. To look at those pictures…thank God no one was seriously hurt and this happened as early as it did. The only thing we can say about this and the Forest Park accident is that CTA had a reason for insisting that there be 3 welds rather than two at the front of the 5000s. But that brings up a point related to the one I just made on the other post--unlike the cars in the Forest Park crash, the front of this car does not look damaged (certainly not crushed, according to these pictures). Of course, I should mention that the first picture shows a lot of undercar equipment damage.
I'm totally baffled as to why the CTA's bumper posts are designed to interlock with the train's anti-climbers. All the 10PM newscasts reported she was on the job for just one year & admits to nodding off, while claiming she was over worked.
I would like to know, how long had she been on this run & is she the operator I complained about on the Yellow Line several weeks ago, who didn't blast the horn at the line's seven grade crossings until she passed the sidewalks at each grade crossing, which is way too late. Operator: The question here is why Kelly was violating the operator's right of fair representation by opening his mouth and incriminating the operator. The only things that probably come out of CTA's mouth, based on that partial investigation, and the black eye it took in the 2006 NTSB report on the Blue Line subway derailment and fire is that some employees get fired and CTA keeps crying that it has $8 billion in unmet needs to get to a state of good repair. Scooter, I believe they said her shift started at 8PM, so this would presumably be near the end of her shift. Looking at the little damage at the base of the escalator it looks like the train was airborne and then came down and rested on top of the midsection of the escalator.
The new twist was the NTSB investigator saying today that the brakes were engaged and the train was not speeding, but the train did not stop.
I had read a theory that the bumper buckled under, creating a ramp of sorts for the train car to ride up.
Somehow Carter got the word that the Claypool crying games are over, and maybe CTA should listen to the communities. The burden of bad public policy has left Chicago’s broad shoulders shrugging – here’s how to fix it. The 'L' station is located beneath the main parking garage in the middle of the central terminal area that the original three terminals 1 (rebuilt in the 1980s), 2, and 3 form a semicircle around the train station.
O'Hare opened a new terminal, International Terminal 5, since the train station opened in 1993.
1 Dead After Metra Train Strikes Car1 man is dead after a Metra train struck a car on Chicago's Far South Side Sunday evening.
An Illinois man suspected of shooting a police officer after a traffic stop was shot and killed in an incident that also left an FBI agent wounded, Illinois State Police said Sunday.
Chicago experienced unusually cold temperatures Sunday morning, tying a record set more than 100 years ago, according to the National Weather Service. A long-time suburban state representative is leaving Springfield to throw his hat into a new ring. A man chased a woman into an Ashburn neighborhood alley and sexually assaulted her early Saturday, according to a community alert from Chicago Police.
Part of the crash scene is visible through a gap in heavy tarps draped to block the view of the damaged train. The O'Hare station will be closed for several days as investigators work the scene of the derailment. A CTA Blue Line train derailed early this morning and passengers were being shuttled to and from the nearest CTA Blue Line station at Rosemont. DePaepe, a railroad accident investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board, speaks at a press conference outside the scene of a train derailment at the CTA O'Hare station at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. The tarp covered the scene of the investigation, keeping the train car out of view from the media and general public.
Commuters are being sent to a bus shuttle area for transport to the Rosemont CTA Blue Line station.
A CTA Blue Line train derailed and landed on an escalator at the O'Hare station earlier in the day. The purpose of the anticlimbers is to keep colliding trains level instead of one submarining the other.

Also, it probably is pretty unlikely that an operator would be assigned to Howard and Rosemont yards on the same pick.
The video was embedded on although it seems to be added to YouTube and then deleted, but a search for CTA Blue Line will probably find it. Subscribe to the mailing list and get a daily update with the most important news from Chicago! These terminals are connected by walkways both airside and landslide along the airport roadway. To reach terminals 1, 2, or 3 from the 'L' station there are two underground moving walkway corridors beneath the parking garage, airport hotel, and inter-airport roadways to each of the three different terminals. But on Friday, the heads of the Latino, Black, and Progressive Caucuses of the Chicago City Council sat down together at Petterino's, looking for ways to flex their muscle. Bruce Rauner's vision of a grand two-year budget compromise with Illinois lawmakers is diminishing as the clock ticks down on this year's legislative session. The braking system of the CTA train was engaged and the train apparently wasn't speeding, a federal official said today. At the time I published this, the motorwoman was still hospitalized and National Transportation Safety Board officials had not yet interviewed her. City (after Cleveland whose Hopkins Airport station on the Rapid opened in 1968 and the metro to Washington-National in 1977) to have a rail rapid transit connection directly to a major airport.
The station has three tracks with two island platforms allowing trains on the central platform to open their doors on both sides. The walkway to Terminal 2 is the shortest and passengers needing the ATS or Terminal 5 are signed to go this way from the rail station.
To drive to it cars must use the Kennedy Expressway (here I-290) which ends at the Airport.
Investigators were looking at faulty brakes, bad signals or human error as possible causes for the accident. Chicago's other Airport Midway received an extension to it on the Orange Line 9 years later in 1993.
The station has a tall vaulted ceiling that lacks any interior support columns and has neat wavy looking glass along the track walls. Although CTA trains pass relatively close to this terminal, with just lanes of the Kennedy Expressway (trains have already emerged from their tunnel and entered its median) and the terminal's parking lot in the way, there are no plans to build it its own CTA Station. In terms of ease of getting from the train to the Terminal, O'Hare is slightly easier with plenty of moving walkways although the actual walking distances might be similar (unless your on an international flight at the new Terminal 5 which requires transferring to the Airport Transit System) but travel times are faster to Midway at half an hour compared to 45 minutes from O'Hare to reach the Loop.
Unique blue signs that say O'Hare and then the Airport Symbol hang from the rafters of this ceiling. The Airport Transit System (ATS) instead (which opened at the same time as the new terminal) does the job. No geographic coordinates are given for the station because it has no access to the street grid (I believe there is no legal way to walk out of O'Hare Airport).
Starting on January 14, 2013 Chicago joined the racks of many other cities (including Vancouver, New York, San Francisco) charging a premium on all rides originating at O'Hare Airport with $5 deducted from pay-per-ride users instead of the normal $2.25 fare. Trains relay before entering the station because at the western end of the platforms beyond the bumper blocks they form one wide platform. Except from this fee are all 1-day, 3-day, 7-day, and 30-day pas holders plus anyone who has swiped into the transit system at another station within two hours and are just charged a 25¢ transfer fee.
From here there are two escalators with stairs and an elevator that lead up to an intermediate level (the ceiling stays the same height) before arriving at the wide fare control area, there are many extra wide turnstiles and entering and leaving passengers are separated by signs and the turnstiles displaying yes or no entry. Here passengers can connect to a shuttle bus (specifically the one that serves parking lot F and must make all the stops in that parking lot) to the Metra O'Hare Transfer Station which opened in 1996 on Metra's North Central Service. There are plenty of all three types of CTA FVMs (regular cash ones, credit, and pass vending machines) and staff to help out of town travelers.
This train through makes just ten weekday round-trips taking about 30 minutes to and from Union Station.

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