A vehicle was struck by a train on the morning of April 5 as the driver attempted an unsafe railroad crossing on Twin Cities Road, the second such incident at that location since January.
The collision occurred near the intersection of Twin Cities and Midway Avenue, when the driver of a blue Dodge drove westbound through the activated crossing gates and into the path of a moving train.
Jim Young, South Sacramento California Highway Patrol’s public information officer, told the Herald that a train was stopped just south of the crossing prior to the crash and that the crossing arms were activated. Young said some other motorists had gone around the gates, assuming the stopped train was the reason for the activation.
However, the stopped train blocked the view of an oncoming northbound locomotive. A bystander video posted on the CHP-South Sacramento Facebook page shows the Dodge on the tracks, moving just out of view as the train, honking its horn, rolls through the crossing.
Young said the train hit the left rear side of the Dodge, causing it to spin out. The driver of the car sustained minor injuries and was taken to a local hospital for treatment.
Galt resident Rob Aadland was waiting at the crossing on his way to Clarksburg when he saw the collision.
“It was pretty eerie. It was literally watching a train wreck, and there’s nothing you can do,” Aadland said.
Another crash occurred at the same crossing on Jan. 29, when a 68-year-old Walnut Grove resident was struck and killed while driving his Chevy around the crossing gates.
Young noted the danger of passing lowered crossing arms, as well as the effect of crashes on train crews and police officers.
“Be patient. Usually, at the most, it’s going to be at most five minutes of waiting”, Young said. “Is that really worth you being injured or killed?”