Yikes!! Colorado tourist train hit by a truck!

EricB Jul 27, 2006

  1. EricB

    EricB TrainBoard Member

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  2. HemiAdda2d

    HemiAdda2d Staff Member

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    Wow! No markings whatsoever?
    Why was there no crossbucks at least?
     
  3. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Amazing that they would start a tourist road with unmarked crossings. At least on the Cumbres & Toltec they have marked (crossbucks) crossings AND people protecting the crossing as the train goes by.
     
  4. r_i_straw

    r_i_straw Staff Member

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    It did not say there were no cross bucks, just that it was "not marked with barriers or lights" at the crossing.
     
  5. JCater

    JCater TrainBoard Member

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    Wow..that's really terrible. Colorado tour rails are important to our economy. Not to make light of the subject, but someone has to ask: were the potatoes turned into french frys?? I'm glad no one was seriously hurt. I had hoped to ride that line later this summer.
    John
     
  6. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    "is not marked with barriers or lights"

    I don't believe this means there are no Cross Bars, just that there is no Gates and/or Lights. There are many places out in rural USA like this that only have Cross Bars.

    Short set of Examples:

    [​IMG] Cross Bars only on Cumbres & Toltec

    [​IMG] Cross Bars only on Durango & Silverton

    [​IMG] Cross Bars only at crossing in La Jara, CO
     
  7. JCater

    JCater TrainBoard Member

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    I know that part of the world and it is most likely that there were only cross bars.
    John
     
  8. sd70mac

    sd70mac TrainBoard Member

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    Those first two photos (D&S, C&TS) are fairly low vehicle traffic and have fairly wide fields of vision for the motorists. I'd like to see a photo of the impact crossing to compare and contrast.
     
  9. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Tourist train hits potato truck - BY LARRY WINGET

    [​IMG]
    Truck driver injured in fiery crash

    BLANCA — The San Luis Express, a Rio Grande Scenic Railroad excursion train, struck a tractor-trailer rig loaded with potatoes, in the town of Blanca at approximately 4:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon.

    The truck-load of potatoes was leaving the Blanfort potato warehouse as the train was traveling west on its way to Alamosa. The two collided at the intersection of the railroad tracks and Broadway Street, in Blanca, one block south of U.S. Highway 160, Blanca’s Main Street.

    Witnesses at the scene reported the driver of the truck either crawled or was knocked out of his cab. He was transported by ambulance to Alamosa where he was reported to be awake and talking. Initial reports indicated that the driver had suffered a sever gash on his forehead, among other possible injuries.

    Officials at the accident said they had no identification for the driver, but a Colorado State Patrol spokesperson said he was from out-of-state and his machine had North Carolina license plates.
    According to Don Shank, director of passenger operations for the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad, the train was carrying 56 passengers and four crew members at the time of the crash.

    The State Patrol said five passengers had been transported by ambulance from the scene, but none of them appeared to have serious injuries.

    After the impact the truck burst into flames and was consumed almost entirely by the blaze.

    John Serna, Costilla County fire chief, said when his department arrived the train was also on fire. He said his crew had to fight a fire that burned the left side of one of the train’s two passenger cars. Several windows were burned out of the car but the flames did not reach into the car’s interior.

    One passenger was heard telling Shank, “Tell that engineer thanks for getting the train out of that d—d fire.”

    Witnesses on board the train said after the impact the trailer swung around to end up next to the passenger car and burst into flames.
    Steven Ellett said he heard a loud noise and saw the cars sway from side to side and then he saw the truck “coming toward us” as the train moved passed the wreckage.

    Ellett was with a group on the train to take a break from their efforts to build houses for Habitat for Humanity. Audrey Liu, director of Habitat for Humanity, and her baby Shasta, led the group of 10, most of whom are from Oregon.

    Dianna Greene, also with the Habitat group, said the train was sounding its horn and was braking “for a long time” before the impact.

    Unconfirmed reports said the truck approached the intersection and appeared to be about to stop and instead proceeded into the railroad crossing.

    Several of the passenger echoed Greene’s comments that the train was sounding its horn as it neared the intersection.

    After the impact, according to passengers Rob and Donna Detwiler, of Pratt, Kans., the passengers walked off of the train and were directed by police to Lu’s Main Street Café, about two blocks away.
    Lu’s offered them drinks and refuge from several rain squalls that passed across the accident site. The café also served as a clearing house to account for everyone involved in the crash.

    At least two of those gathered at Lu’s were transported for medical treatment, but did not appear to be seriously hurt.

    Serna said his department wanted to thank Lu’s staff for their support after the accident.

    The train passengers were transported by bus from their gathering at Lu’s to their destination.​
     
  10. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I'm sure there must have been Cross Bucks. All public crossings must have some sort of protection. Even private crossings usually have cross bucks, and might also display a stop sign. They may have been destroyed in the accident. And the line should have been inspected by a governmental entity, before it could even operate.....

    :sad:

    Boxcab E50
     
  11. JCater

    JCater TrainBoard Member

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    Having seen the pic I am certain I have crossed the line (SLV potato growers assn, I think). The line was marked with a sign but it was not gated last time I was through there. It is very rural and very isolated.
    John
     
  12. milwaukeerailroader

    milwaukeerailroader TrainBoard Member

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    Would you like butter and sour cream with your baked potato?
     
  13. Gats

    Gats Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    There looks to be a set of 'crossbucks' to the right of the smoldering pile of potatoes.
     
  14. Stourbridge Lion

    Stourbridge Lion TrainBoard Supporter

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    Mashed you mean... :biggrin9xs:
     
  15. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    I think he meant "twice-baked".......:teeth:
     
  16. Dave Jones

    Dave Jones TrainBoard Supporter

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    All news articles concerning auto/train crashes should read "Inept/Incapable/Dumb Car/Truck Driver Runs Into Train". Nothing else is descriptive or fair.
     
  17. r_i_straw

    r_i_straw Staff Member

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    Sure looks like a cross buck to me. The guy in the yellow slicker is leaning on it with one arm.
     

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  18. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Probably more like burned hash browns..... Dunno what would cover that taste. :eek:mg:

    :D

    Boxcab E50
     
  19. friscobob

    friscobob Staff Member

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    Gee, I don't know about Colorado schools, but back in Oklahoma when I took Drivers Ed I was taught that a RR crossing sign at least meant that there were tracks there, and one should approach with caution, and proceed only when it is safe to do so.

    But sheewt, Ah wuz just a dumb ol' Okie hagh skewler, whut did Ah know? ;)
     
  20. Kozmo

    Kozmo TrainBoard Member

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    was the truck driver deaf?
    I know on most (if not all) railroads they blow the whistles when approching a crossing. if hte driver was a regular on a regular route, he should have been well aware of the trains, the whistle and what it means.
    was the truck driver overtired?
    on meth?
    drunk?
    all of the above?
     

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