NTSB: 2014 Galva collision due to faulty control signals, lack of risk assessment

By Chris Swick
December 24, 2015

A National Transportation Safety Board report released last week says the cause of an accident in September of 2014 between two Union Pacific freight trains near Galva was the result of poor placement of control signals.

According to the report, the NTSB says a green LED signal masked the red signal on the east end of the Galva siding, resulting in the crew of the eastbound train passing the signal and colliding with the westbound train.

The report also found Union Pacific failed to conduct risk assessment of the new control point installation.

Five cars derailed from the westbound train in the accident, while two locomotive units and four cars derailed in the eastbound train. At the time, Union Pacific estimated about 200 gallons of diesel fuel leaked from the fuel tank of one of the derailed locomotives. No crew members from either train were seriously injured.