02/11/19 -- 0878H01.03H (Amendment HA1 to HB 280) -- Changes liability crossing railroad tracks

Bill Number: 
0878H01.03H (Amendment HA1 to HB 280)
Bill Purpose: 
Changes liability crossing railroad tracks
Date of Vote: 
02/11/19
My Vote: 
No
Explanation: 

HB 280 is a relatively simple bill that would require vehicles approaching a railroad crossing to stop at the tracks not only when a train is coming (existing law), but also when other on-track equipment operated by the railroad is approaching.  This amendment, introduced by Representative Matt Sain (Democrat - District 14) would negate these new provisions in the event that saftety equipment isn't triggered or if the on-track equipment fails to follow proper procedures. 

The argument was that a passenger vehicle aught not be liable if a piece of railroad equipment recklessly passes through an intersection.  This is not a terrible argument, however I was unconvinced.  It seems to me if you are about to cross a railroad track, on which a massive train might be traveling at high speed, you really need to stop and look in pretty much all cases.  If you don't and something hits you, there's a good chance it was foreseeable and your fault.

I voted no on this amendment, which failed on a roll call vote.