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A family of women who died in a Metra train wreck at Clarendon Hills says they were able to prevent a truck crash.

Clarendon Hills, Illinois (CBS)- A 72-year-old woman’s family lawyer, who was killed when her Metra train crashed into a box truck in the western suburbs of Clarendon Hills, said the crash was “a waiting accident.”

Christina Lopez in Downers Grove Killed when a BNSF Railway train collided with a truck I was stopped at the Clarendon Hills truck around 8:20 am on Wednesday. Autopsy is scheduled for Friday.

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Christina Lopez, 72, was killed on May 11, 2022, when her Metra train collided with a truck parked on a railroad track in Clarendon Hills, Illinois.

Photo provided


The National Transportation Safety Board has begun investigating the conflict. NTSB Vice-Chair Bruce Lansburg said in front of the box truck on Thursday, contrary to the initial report that the box truck was caught behind another vehicle and prevented it from leaving the truck before the train collided. The box truck didn’t move before the pickup truck that was there crashed, saying it had cleared the truck, but before the crossing gate went down, even though it had time to do so.

“I don’t know why the truck didn’t work. That would be one of the things we have to discover,” Lansburg said.

Steve Jumboy, a lawyer for Lopez’s family, said several complaints had been filed with Clarendon Hills about the railroad crossing, but nothing was done.

“From all I’ve heard, it was an accident waiting to happen. Traffic was very slow due to the construction at the intersection, people were often harmed and this was detained. It was a thing. It happened and was very preventable, “he said.

When asked if Lopez’s family plans to sue the village of Clarendon Hills in a crash, Jumboy said he was waiting for the NTSB’s findings.

Meanwhile, Lopez’s son-in-law, Jeff Kronovsky, asked someone who might have information about the previous problem at the crossroads to come forward.

“This accident was prevented. If anyone has any information, video footage, or information to help us get the answer, we would be very grateful for it, so please contact us. Wants to get an answer, but it’s important that we want to play our part so that the family doesn’t have to experience this tragedy again. It didn’t have to happen, “he said. Told.

Sabrina Franca of CBS2 got an exclusive video of the accident. The video was taken by Tom Schulgot from a car waiting at an intersection. The bell rings and the red light flashes, but the truck sits under a partially lowered crossing gate.


Video: Metra train crashes into truck at Clarendon Hills

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First, you can see two people getting off the truck while the Metra train is honking. The Metra train then enters the truck directly, destroying the crossing gates and lowering the overhead lines. A cloud of black smoke appeared on the other side of the train, revealing that the wreckage of the truck was burning after the train passed.

“It sounded just like, you can’t explain it,” said Samige Ademi. “When you hear it, it’s something. You know it’s not normal, so your heart beats faster.”

According to Landsburg, one or both of the box truck’s diesel tanks punctured in a collision, igniting a fire involving the truck, based on evidence collected so far.

According to Landsberg, the NTSB will stay in Clarendon Hills for a few days to collect physical evidence and interview everyone involved in the crash as part of the investigation.

The NTSB is still downloading data from the train’s event recorder to accurately determine the speed at the time of the collision, but Lansburg said the train has exceeded the 70mph speed limit set for that section of the track. Said it doesn’t seem to be. He also said the train seemed to start trying to stop before the collision.

“At these speeds, it takes about a mile to stop one of these trains. The train was a point of impact, so they were trying to slow down before hitting the truck,” he says. I did.

CBS 2 talked to the delivery driver on Wednesday about a problem with a train intersection.

Daniel Person said he would pass through the intersection at least 30 times a day during the delivery.

“There is a very sharp 4-inch lip, and every driver passing through here needs to slow down until it almost stops to get over it,” he said. “In fact, I was once stuck on the railroad track because someone stopped and didn’t go to the other side. I was on the railroad track and I was a little nervous, but the train didn’t come.”

According to Landsburg, the NTSB’s investigation will investigate all factors involved in a collision, from train speed to intersection gates and traffic lights to intersection design. Investigators see images from the cameras on board the train and other cameras that may have shot the collision.

He asked witnesses who may have seen or recorded a camera crash to contact the NTSB by email at the following address: witness@ntsb.gov..

However, according to Mr. Lansburg, according to the camera images confirmed so far, after the front part of the train collided with the truck, the rear end of the box truck was swung around and hit the right side of the train.

Lopez was kicked out of the left side of the train, and investigators haven’t pinpointed exactly how it happened, but Lansburg said she could have been sitting on the right side of the train at the time of the collision.

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NTSB investigators investigated the damaged Metra train after colliding with the Clarendon Hills box truck and killed train passenger Christina Lopez when she was thrown out of the train.

NTSB


Landsburg said it was “very rare” to injure train passengers in this type of collision, but the “tremendous force” that accompanies the back of the truck when it hits the train causes Lopez from the train. He said it helped to get rid of him.

The NTSB has expressed concern for decades that passengers will be expelled from trains during a collision. According to the NTSB, it has been kicked out of the train at least three times since 2013.

Meanwhile, Mr. Kronovsky said Lopez’s family was grateful for the support he received from the community since his mother-in-law was murdered.

“I’m very fortunate to have most of the extended families here. I was able to celebrate Mother’s Day, including Chris,” Kronovsky said. “We knew very little about her blessings at the time we spent with her, and we are very grateful for it.”

The retired cleaner Lopez was a mother of three and a grandmother of five. Kronovsky said he often does baby sat for his grandchildren in Downers Grove.

“She is a devoted sister of ten brothers, seven of whom are still with us today. As you can imagine, she is a caring aunt of many nieces and nephews. And she was a loyal and lifelong friend to many, “he said. ..

According to Kronovsky, the family was fortunate to be able to celebrate Mother’s Day, a few days before the crash, with Lopez and most of his extended family.

“We know she’s terribly missed,” he said. “Some are black and white, others are gray. She was gray, but I say it most positively. She was the glue to her family.”

Kronovsky said Lopez was on his way to visit Lagrange’s sister at the time of the crash.

“We all need to be grateful for the time we have, that is, time is a product you can’t get anymore and take advantage of the time you have with your loved ones. It’s important to remind you to focus on what it is. “

According to Kronowski, Lopez moved to Downers Grove a few years ago after spending most of his life in Chicago, most recently working on cleaning the ABC7 office in downtown Chicago.

Four other Metra trains were injured in a collision that killed Lopez – including two passengers, a train conductor, and a train engineer.

According to Landsburg, the truck driver and two passengers on the box truck were able to escape before the collision.

The truck was severely burned and the car in front of the train was severely damaged by the collision.

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NTSB


Emily Schwitz, who works nearby, said she saw the incident unfold. She said the crossing gate was down, but the warning wasn’t completely valid.

“One of the real things fell, but there was no sound, so I saw the driver get off the driver’s seat and run, and by the time I looked back, the truck was almost upside down,” he said. She said.

Since 2017, more than 500 incidents have occurred at railroad crossings in Illinois, 81 of which have died, according to Landsburg. In DuPage County, there were 28 train-crossing poor people in between, six of whom were deadly. In Clarendon Hills, in the last five years, there was another crossroads incident in which a pedestrian was killed by train in 2017.

The preliminary report on the crash should be completed in about two weeks, but Landsberg said the report did not include an analysis of the crash, only an explanation of the facts at that time.

According to Landsburg, it will take at least three months to begin the accident analysis, and the final report is likely to be completed in 12-18 months, with recommendations to prevent such accidents again. It will be.

BNSF Railway was closed for hours after the crash on Wednesday, but resumed limited service prior to the evening rush. On Thursday, the line was scheduled for Saturday and did not stop at Clarendon Hills. On Friday, the BNSF Railway line will resume its regular weekday schedule and trains will stop regularly at Clarendon Hills.

However, the Prospect Avenue intersection will remain closed until further notice. Passengers can use the pedestrian crossing near the depot.

A family of women who died in a Metra train wreck at Clarendon Hills says they were able to prevent a truck crash.

Source link A family of women who died in a Metra train wreck at Clarendon Hills says they were able to prevent a truck crash.

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