Weatherford Democrat

Aledo ExtrA

February 26, 2014

Couple escapes train/truck collision

By JUDY SHERIDAN

An elderly man, his wife and their dog escaped with their lives on Valentine’s Day evening when the Ford pickup they were driving broke down on the railroad tracks in Aledo, minutes before it was hit by an eastbound train.

The couple, who was returning to Amarillo and appeared to be in their 80s, according to Nick Walker of the Aledo Fire Department, scrabbled down the rocky railroad bed to safety when they heard the train coming, the woman breaking her finger and the man scraping his knee.

“They refused all medical treatment,” Walker said.

Trooper Lonny Haschel, a spokesman with the Department of Public Safety, said the driver of the truck, heading north on FM Road 1187, got stuck on the tracks when he turned right directly onto them, believing he was in a lane that veered to the right.

“He broke his drive shaft,” he said. “He got out of his truck, and the train came along and struck the truck with nobody in it.”

Haschel said DPS did not do a report because the incident took place on private property, the domain of the Union Pacific Railroad Company.

UPRR Corporate Relations and Media Director Raquel Espinoza confirmed that an eastbound train with two locomotives and 110 rail cars filled with mixed freight hit the back of an unoccupied pickup at 7:47 p.m. Feb. 14.

The crossing at FM 1187 is marked with crossing signs and equipped with lights and gates, she noted, adding that the report shows the driver drove more than 110 feet down the tracks before stopping.

Espinoza said the investigation is ongoing.

Morris Leondar, of the Aledo Fire Department, said the pickup was on the track “a minute or so” before the couple heard the train coming and bailed.

“It was about as close as you get I guess,” he said. “The train smashed in the truck bed and knocked the truck off the tracks.”

Eastbound trains travel uphill, so they don’t travel as fast as their westbound counterparts, Leondar said, a factor that worked in the couple’s favor.

He said the incident caused a traffic backup that lasted about two hours.

Aledo city administrator Ken Pfeifer said the signs and multiple barrels marking the newly-opened one-way couplet, which includes the crossing, were not factors in the accident.

“The reports from those on site (the emergency personnel and engineer) indicated the elderly couple turned directly onto the railroad track,” he emailed.

1
Text Only
Aledo ExtrA
  • IMG_7134.JPG Despite cold, peach crops looking rosy

    Parker County peach growers won’t know for sure for a few more days, but as of Wednesday, one day after April temperatures plummeted into the low 30s, they’re predicting a good, even rosy, peach harvest for this year’s Parker County Peach Festival.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Aledo ISD "Shattered Dreams" and parent workshop

    Aledo ISD high school students will get a taste of what it’s like to be in a car accident with fatalities Thursday, April 17th, and Friday, April 18th, as they participate in “Shattered Dreams,” a program designed to save lives. A parent workshop about the topics addressed in the program will be held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 17.

    April 16, 2014

  • Hitting the trail for MS

    STEPHENVILLE – The Cowboy Capital MS Trail Ride is a fun-filled event dedicated to raising funds that support national research into the cause and cure for Multiple Sclerosis as well as provide programs to more than 9,000 people in the Lone Star Chapter area whose lives are touched by MS.

    April 16, 2014

  • Parker County man killed in single-vehicle wreck

    A 60-year-old Parker County man was killed around 9:30 a.m. Tuesday in a one-vehicle crash in the 2100 block of FM Road 3325, also known as Farmer Road.

    April 15, 2014

  • hiebert_kim.jpg Aledo City Council Place 4 candidates for May 10 election

    Early voting for the May 10 general election begins April 28. Following is some information gathered from the candidates for the Place 4 Aledo City Council seat. Aledo Mayor Kit Marshall is running for re-election unopposed.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • Jean Bailey photo.jpg Aledo City Council Place 2 candidates

    Early voting for the May 10 general election begins April 28. Following is some information gathered from the candidates running for the Aledo City Council Place 2 seat. Aledo Mayor Kit Marshall is running for re-election unopposed.

    April 15, 2014 2 Photos

  • USAF photo.jpg USAF heroes to Ride for Heroes

    The 12th annual Ride for Heroes bike ride this Saturday in Aledo will include some VIPs: members of the United States Air Force Cycling Team.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • FM 5 intersection makeover

    City of Willow Park officials were recently told that a planned reconstruction of the intersection of Interstate 20 frontage roads and FM Road 5 now has funding from the state and is moving ahead.

    April 15, 2014

  • DSC_0074.JPG Bearcat Bootcamp holds successful fundraiser

    Bearcat Bootcamp, an Aledo fitness organization, held its first 1-mile Fun Run and Back the Bearcats 5K race April 5.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hearing held for Annetta Crime Control District

    The Crime Control and Prevention District proposed for the Town of Annetta — which voters have the chance to accept or reject in the May 10 election — moved forward last week with an April 7 public hearing.

    April 15, 2014

Must Read
Top News
House Ads
AP Video
Disbanding Muslim Surveillance Draws Praise Hundreds Missing After South Korean Ferry Sinks Passengers Abuzz After Plane Hits Swarm of Bees Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Pistorius Trial: Adjourned Until May 5 Diaz Gets Physical for New Comedy Raw: Ferry Sinks Off South Korean Coast Town, Victims Remember Texas Blast Freeze Leaves Florida Panhandle With Dead Trees At Boston Marathon, a Chance to Finally Finish Are School Dress Codes Too Strict? Raw: Fatal Ferry Boat Accident Suspicious Bags Found Near Marathon Finish Line Boston Marks the 1st Anniversary of Bombing NYPD Ends Muslim Surveillance Program 8-year-old Boy Gets His Wish: Fly Like Iron Man Sex Offenders Arrested in Slayings of CA Women India's Transgenders Celebrate Historic Ruling Tributes Mark Boston Bombing Anniversary Raw: Kan. Shooting Suspect Faces Judge