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Blood on the Russian Tracks

Earlier today, the Russian Railways concluded its official investigation into the death of Elena Soboleva, who died on January 18 crossing the tracks at the Saltykovskaia train platform [ru], located just east of Moscow. The Railways (or RZhD, as it's known in Russian) determined [ru] that Ms. Soboleva was responsible for her own death, having elected to cross the tracks despite numerous signs and signals that a speeding train was approaching.

This verdict has inspired her husband, Kommersant radio journalist Sergei Sobolev, to launch on Facebook a civic campaign against both RZhD and the local town government for negligence in public safety. Sobolev claims that 20-25 people die annually at this train crossing, and reports that two more people have died there since his wife's fatal accident. RZhD, for its part, refutes [ru] those numbers, insisting that only nine people sustained nonfatal injuries in 2011 and 2012. Sobolev, however, says he wants to build a public campaign and eventually take formal legal action.

Mr. Sobolev's efforts have already attracted significant attention [ru] from the mainstream media at both the local and regional levels.

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