(San Lorenzo, California – May 3, 2019)
A 16-year-old junior student at Alameda County, CA’s KIPP King Collegiate High School was killed Friday morning by a southbound Union Pacific freight train in a rail corridor termed by railroaders as “Blood Alley”.
The victim was riding to school alongside UPRR rails that carry a dail6y average of eight UP freight and Amtrak passenger trains at a maximum allowable speed of 70 mph.
The unofficial but often used nickname has been earned over the last few decades due to the high number of motorist and pedestrian fatalities suffered along the line between Oakland’s Jack London Square and the area south of Fremont, CA.
The tragedy occurred about 8:06 AM, PDT as the southbound train overtook the southbound cyclist, whose name was withheld by the Alameda County Coroner pending notification of next-of-kin.
“He was on that narrow bridge with not a lot of room on the side to kind of get out of the way,” explained Alameda County Sheriff’s Department Spokesman Sgt. Ray Kelly. “He was overcome (by the train) really quickly,” Sgt. Kelly added.
But King Collegiate Principal Kelly Lara knew well who the victim was, and she was both visibly shaken and heartbroken as she addressed the media, saying “our student was a beloved member of our 11th grade class and our entire school community. He had a big heart,” she continued, and added that “Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.”