Federal investigators say a railroad worker from Jonesborough who was killed at a Chattanooga rail yard in April was struck by a remote-control locomotive.
Allen Lowe was killed at CSX’s Wauhatchie rail yard in the late afternoon of April 13.
A preliminary investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board reveals that Lowe had just completed work on a section of track when he drove his truck over the “north lead” track. He then got out of the vehicle to retrieve a blue signal sign and remove his lock from a switch.
The NTSB says the operator of a remote-control locomotive on the “north lead” stopped the locomotive after seeing Lowe cross the tracks, waited a short amount of time, and after “seeing no activity ahead,” resumed moving the locomotive.
The locomotive was traveling up to 9 mph when it fatally stuck Lowe, who had his back turned to the locomotive, according to the NTSB.
The NTSB says the information in the report is preliminary and a probable cause for the incident has not yet been determined.
Kelly Ball, a friend of Lowe’s, told News Channel 11 back in April that she was supposed to see her friend at a cookout, but he never made it.
“Wow, I feel so lucky to have known him,” Ball said. “He was able to light up a room when he came in. He gave 24 years of his life to CSX, and I just truly hope that they make sure that this doesn’t happen again.”
She said Lowe was from Jonesborough and was the father of two children.