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February 13, 1892


JAMA. 1892;XVIII(7):204-205. doi:10.1001/jama.1892.02411110022009

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Statistics for 1891 show that in round numbers, over twenty-five hundred persons were killed instantly, and over twenty-two thousand were injured, by accidents on railroads in this country. The mortality of passengers was greater in 1891 than for several years past. These figures are very startling, and indicate a greater fatality, comparatively, than in any of the modern wars. One of the causes is clearly the free use of spirits by the operatives and trainmen. Most of the companies recognize this, and have adopted rigid rules against the use of spirits, and promptly discharge men who are seen drinking. The efforts to employ only total abstainers are a partial success in most companies. The trainmen on the trunk lines, as a rule, are of the better class, and give but little evidence of the use of spirits. Yet some of the severe accidents of the year pointed clearly to a

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