A flag is left at the scene of an accident where four veterans were killed and 16 other people were injured when a train slammed into a parade float carrying the returning heroes to a banquet last Thursday in Midland, Texas on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. Federal investigators were trying to determine whether the two-float parade had been given enough warning to clear the tracks. (AP Photo/Juan Carlos Llorca)
MIDLAND, Texas (AP) — Federal investigators say the warning signals at a railroad crossing in West Texas were activated before a parade float crossed the tracks in an accident that killed military veterans.
National Transportation Safety Board member Mark Rosekind made that announcement at a news conference Saturday. He said the signals had been activated seven seconds before the float crossed the tracks.
Four veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan were killed Thursday when a freight train slammed into the parade float in Midland. Sixteen people were injured.
Rosekind said the NTSB reconstructed the accident using video cameras from the train and a sheriff's vehicle.
He said the train started sounding its horn nine seconds before it hit the float. The train engineer also used the emergency brake five second before the crash.