In what was a near-tragedy, a freight train plowed into a truck that got stuck on a set of railroad tracks in New York — and a bit of quick-thinking just moments before impact may have saved the driver’s life. The 18-wheeler never stood a chance as it sat on the tracks crossing New Main.
According to Brian Thompson,
In what was a near-tragedy, a freight train plowed into a truck that got stuck on a set of railroad tracks in New York — and a bit of quick-thinking just moments before impact may have saved the driver’s life.
The 18-wheeler never stood a chance as it sat on the tracks crossing New Main Street near Route 9W in Haverstraw Thursday morning. The CSX freight train was barreling up the line just before 9:30 a.m. when a witness saw the truck wasn’t able to move.
“A passerby who saw he was stuck on the tracks came by and flagged down one of our sergeants who was down the road on another detail, said he was caught on the tracks,” said Haverstraw Police Captain John Gould.
The officer came racing up Route 9W, and could hear the train behind him. He got there just in time to get the driver out of the cab of the truck.
“The driver was in the cab of the truck on the phone trying to arrange for help to come and help him get off the tracks and didn’t hear,” said Gould.
Seconds later, the locomotive came plowing through, cutting the trailer in half before the engineer could bring it to a stop up the tracks. Fortunately, neither the driver nor the train crew was injured.
The load of hundreds (if not thousands) of titanium piping headed to a power plant became a tangled mess of pick-up sticks that had to be corralled and removed from the scene.
There’s a history of crashes at the particular Rockland County railroad crossing — but why? A nearby sign tells it all: There is low ground clearance because of the steep grade of the street going up to the tracks.
Several years ago, a car carrier got stuck crossing the very same tracks. The truck in that situation was also mangled by a freight train, but yet again, no one was killed in the crash and the truck’s driver escaped unhurt.
A check of federal railroad record found 10 incidents at the crossing dating back to 1979, two of which were deadly/
The train in Thursday’s incident was ultimately able to leave by midafternoon. The trains that followed showed there was no significant damage to the tracks themselves.