The train was taking GOP members to a political retreat in West Virginia.
In a preliminary report about the collision, the safety agency said that the train's track footage shows the truck in the grade crossing with the lowered gates.
They said around 11:15 a.m. on January 31, a 2018 Freightliner truck equipped with a McNeilus Truck & Manufacturing refuse body was traveling southbound on Lanetown Road in Albemarle County near Crozet, Virginia.
The two trash collectors were ejected from the truck. The NTSB said the crossing had "advance warning signs", like bells and lights to show a train was coming. But it offered some new details about the crash, which killed a trash collector and injured several other people, including another trash collector and the truck's driver.
The NTSB says the front axle of the lead locomotive derailed as the train continued moving, but it remained upright.
"NTSB investigators continue to examine issues related to the highway-railroad grade crossing".
The report said investigators are also coordinating additional passenger and witness interviews and are continuing to gather information related to rail operations, motor carrier operations, and driver and train crew experience. Six people called police between 2010 and 2016 to report problems with the crossing gates, including complaints that they were staying down for an extended period of time, and that one gate was up while the other was down, according to a response to a Freedom of Information Act request.
Boyd McCauley, the founder of the trash company, Time Disposal, identified the truck driver as Dana Naylor Jr. Witnesses to the crash reported that the refuse truck entered the crossing after the gates were down. He said Naylor, 30, is a longtime employee who was familiar with the railroad crossing, which is located at an intersection at the top of a hill where visibility is limited.
"The track and operational characteristics of the crossing signals were also examined and documented", the NTSB said in its report.
McCauley did not immediately return calls Wednesday seeking comment on Naylor's driving record or the NTSB's preliminary report. Lawmakers at the time described the scene of the accident on social media, while members of Congress who are also doctors helped the injured.