After three people were killed in a collision between an Amtrak passenger train and a passenger vehicle Friday night in North Tonawanda, Congressman Tim Kennedy is calling on the Federal Railroad Administration to conduct an investigation into the accident and make recommendations to improve the safety of the CSX-owned crossing.

In a letter to the FRA, Rep. Kennedy noted that the rail crossing previously saw a fatal accident in 2001, as well as other non-fatal accidents. 

"Our region is heartbroken for the loved ones of the three individuals who lost their lives last Friday, including a 6-year-old boy," said Rep. Kennedy. "More than 200 people lose their lives each year on at-grade crossings across the country. Each is a tragedy, and we need to do more. We need to take the information we will learn from this investigation and turn it into action. The best tool we have here will be knowledge, and I look forward to working to improve the safety of rail at the federal level, just as I have worked to at the state level."

As more information is made available about the causes of the tragedy in North Tonawanda, Rep. Kennedy says he plans to work with his colleagues to address rail safety at the federal level.

"My sincere condolences go out to the family and friends of the grandparents and six-year-old who tragically lost their lives during the heartbreaking accident last Friday," Senator Jeremy Cooney, Chairman of the NYS Senate Transportation Committee said. "I agree with Congressman Kennedy that this incident should be thoroughly investigated so we can determine what could have been done differently, and do everything in our power to make sure something like this never happens again."

An investigation into the crash is ongoing.