Chief Investigative Reporter

Jeremy Finley is the chief investigator for News4 Investigates. His reporting has resulted in criminal convictions, legislative hearings before the U.S. Congress, and the payout of more than a million dollars to scam victims.

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - An internal CSX accident report obtained by News4 Investigates shows a mechanical device designed to keep a train from tipping over was ultimately responsible for the Feb. 27 derailment in Berry Hill.

That derailment of six cars also tore apart the tracks and was dangerously close to where people parked waiting for the train to cross.

News4 Investigates also obtained video from a passerby that shows a flash and bump on the train just before the derailment.

That flash occurred right where the accident report shows the primary cause of the accident occurred.

The CSX report cites a code that translates to “side bearing had insufficient clearance” as the primary cause of the derailment.

News4 Investigates consulted with two train derailment experts on side bearings to understand how that mechanical device could be to blame.

Animation provided to News4 Investigates by one of our experts shows that the devices help balance the train when it rocks, keeping it from toppling over on uneven tracks or when in a train is taking a curve.

If a side bearing does not have enough clearance between the railcar and the base of the wheels, the experts said that it can lead to a derailment.

The CSX report also cites a narrative that is difficult to understand, writing, “Experience a UDE where the conductor discovered six cars derailed.”

News4 Investigates emailed CSX media relations and a spokesman, but neither responded for questions about their accident report or what “UDE” means.

However, in reviewing train accident abbreviations, UDE commonly refers to as “unintended emergency application of brakes.”

CLICK to read full report

WSMV.com is now with you on the go! Get the latest news updates and video, 4WARN weather forecast, weather radar, special investigative reports, sports headlines and much more from News4 Nashville.

>> Click/tap here to download our free mobile app. <<


Copyright 2019 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.