Railroad News

Arizona Pedestrian Killed by Amtrak Train on BNSF Tracks

(Flagstaff, Arizona – July 19, 2020)

A 24-year-old Flagstaff resident lost his life Sunday afternoon at about 2:47 PM, MDT when he was struck by an Amtrak train. The pedestrian, Allen Shaffer, was attempting to cross BNSF Railway tracks near the Flagstaff Amtrak Depot at 1 East Highway 66 and Humphreys Street when the incident occurred.  According to witness statements, Allen was watching a BNSF freight train pass by and likely neither saw nor heard the approaching Amtrak train on the opposite track until it was too late. Authorities attempted to revive the victim, but he was pronounced deceased at the scene.

A daily average of 70 BNSF freight and Amtrak passenger trains pass through the depot area at a maximum speed of 45 mph or stop at the station. The area is not actually a railroad crossing, but it is heavily traversed by pedestrians due to the required public access to board and exit trains. There are no pedestrian channelization devices or fences to restrict pedestrians from the location where Allen was standing at the time of the tragedy.