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Firefighter aids with train accident

by | Jul 30, 2015 | Latest

By Wyndi Veigel

News Editor

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In a true bout of irony, Farmersville Volunteer Firefighter Andrew Sutherland was first on scene and provided aid when a car collided with a train in Sachse.

This event occurred less than a week after a mass casualty drill to simulate a train derailment occurred in Farmersville.

The crash occurred around 9 a.m., July 22, just off Hwy. 78, which runs parallel to the tracks.

Sachse Police Department Lt. Marty Cassidy stated that Patricia Martinez Lopez was stopped along the tracks when the train began to approach.

She was unable to move her vehicle far enough backwards or forwards and as a result the train clipped the car.

“She should haven’t done what she did,” Cassidy said. “The train was coming at her and she wasn’t able to get out the way. The best thing to do would have been to stop before making it to the tracks.”

Sutherland, according to police reports, was in the back seat of the car supporting the neck of the driver. He drove up to the wreck after it occurred and began to render aid.

He added, “Plain and simple, it’s just dangerous to try and make it across the tracks. Some areas have a limited view of sight, which makes it hard to see when trains are approaching.”

The crash resulted in the southbound lane traffic along Hwy. 78 to backup into Wylie.

Lopez was issued three citations: one for stopping, standing, parking prohibited in railroad crossing, no insurance and registration expired in April 2014.

The driver was transported to a near by hospital with injuries of a minor fashion.

No others were hurt during the early morning accident.

The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles has seven steps for safety in highway-rail grade crossings.

  • Approach with care.
  • Prepare to stop
  • Look and listed both ways, carefully.
  • If it won’t fit, don’t commit. Do not enter a crossing unless you can drive completely through without stopping.
  • Look again.
  • Cross tracks with care.
  • Keep going once you start, even if lights start to flash or gates come down.

Staff Writer David Jenkins contributed to this story.

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