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Sleep Apnea May be to Blame For The Hoboken Train Accident

November 26, 2016

Georgia Personal Injury Provides Update on Hoboken Train Accident – Sleep Apnea May be to Blame

Now that nearly two months have passed since the tragic Hoboken train accident occurred in New Jersey, killing one woman and injuring more than 100 people, we finally have some information that may shed light on what went wrong. 

The transit train's engineer did not recall anything from the accident and insisted that he was fine and awake shortly before the accident occurred.  However, a recent statement from the engineer's attorney informed New Jersey Transit that the engineer had been diagnosed with sleep apnea. The engineer underwent a sleep study that confirmed this diagnosis. New Jersey Transit has a policy for screening engineers for sleep apnea, which has been in place since 2005. However, New Jersey Transit has not disclosed whether the engineer involved in the Hoboken train accident was screened for the condition. As such, it is unclear if the engineer ever had any prior symptoms of sleep apnea or was treated for the condition in the past.

New Jersey Transit Changes Policy on Engineers Suffering from Sleep Apnea

After learning that the engineer involved in the Hoboken train accident suffers from sleep apnea, New Jersey Transit has implemented a policy that any engineer diagnosed with sleep apnea must demonstrate that the condition is under control before operating a train. The old policy stated that engineers with sleep apnea were allowed to operate trains so long as they were currently being treated for the condition, and did not have to demonstrate that the condition was well-controlled.

Federal Regulators Create a Safety Bulletin on Sleep Apnea

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will be releasing a safety bulletin that recommends all railroads implement a new policy to screen train engineers for sleep apnea and confirm that these engineers are fit to operate trains. Such recommendations have been made in the past, but have not been broadly implemented across the train industry.

Will Screening for Sleep Apnea Help?

While many individuals suffering from sleep apnea have control over the condition and can fully function like any other person without the disorder, it still causes concern for many people that a train engineer with sleep apnea could fall asleep at any given moment. This is certainly a legitimate concern as treatment of sleep apnea cannot always guarantee that the condition will not lead to sudden fatigue or sleep. However, with extensive screening measures and monitoring, federal regulators are hopeful that accidents similar to the Hoboken accident will never happen again.

Contact Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law Today to Schedule Your Free Consultation

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries following a train accident, or if you have lost a loved one due to fatal injuries suffered as a result of a train accident, it is important to act quickly by seeking the advice and counsel of a Georgia Personal Injury and Train Accident Attorney at Montlick & Associates to learn about your rights and options. With more than 39 years of experience, Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law strives to provide the best legal representation possible under the law to their clients from all across Georgia. To schedule your free consultation to speak with one of our Georgia Personal Injury and Train Accident Attorneys, contact Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law today by calling (800) LAW-NEED (529-6333). You may also visit us online at to complete a Free Case Evaluation Form, and you may also participate in a 24-hour Live Online Chat.


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Category: Personal Injury

Please Note:
All information provided by our blogs is general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Consult a Montlick attorney for details about your unique situation.