Citizen-advocate George Swimmer spent twenty years investigating the causes behind railroad collisions. What he discovered is a tangled mess of both inadvertent and intentional mismanagement. In Railroad Collisions, Swimmer reveals his findings. He faults the railroads themselves for poor risk management, but the industry is by means the only culpable party. The Federal Railroad Administration's timid dealings with railroad companies impairs meaningful changes, while the National Transportation Safety Board's findings in many of their accident investigations are woefully, fatally incorrect. From commuter train collisions to engineer fatigue and a nationwide epidemic of incorrectly set safety crossing lights, Swimmer paints a picture of an industry willing to put complacency ahead of safety, often actively working against positive change. Swimmer supports his arguments with concrete examples. His interviews with locomotive engineers and a former safety director are thought-provoking and hard-hitting, while discussions with the parents of children killed in preventable railroad accidents provide a compassionate glimpse into the human cost of mismanaged risk. Doing for railway transportation what Ralph Nader's Unsafe at Any Speed did for the automobile industry, Railroad Collisions is a sobering look at how mismanagement and misinformation endangers lives throughout America's sprawling rail system.
George Swimmer is a certified public accountant who received his bachelor of science degree from Northern Illinois University. A registered investment advisor, Swimmer holds various insurance licenses and is a certified nurse's assistant. An outspoken citizen advocate who spent over twenty years investigating train accidents and arguing for improved railroad safety, Swimmer is a recipient of the Citizen Advocacy Center's Citizen Initiative Award, the Lions Clubs International Foundation's Melvin Jones Fellow Award, and the DuPage Railroad Safety Council's Jonathan Goers Award. A former member of the Illinois Task Force on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD), Swimmer also served as a member of the Marine Corps Active Reserves.