(Brownsburg, Indiana –March 13, 2012)
The Brownsburg (IN) High School rugby coach is dead after he attempted to cross CSX railroad tracks at a dangerous, unguarded, fogbound crossing about 7:00 A.M. Tuesday morning, only to have his pickup truck struck and dragged 50 feet by a 1,500-foot-long CSX freight train.
Jeremy Strange, 25, the father of a 5-year-old daughter, was in his first year as head coach of the rugby team, with the season about to start. He was partially ejected from his vehicle, which was totally destroyed in the accident, and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Although police said the intersection, “is not a busy intersection,” a spokesperson from the Brownsburg Fire Dept. said “the crossing does have a history of problems.” The crossing is equipped with only standard railroad crossbuck signs as “protection” from oncoming trains and completely lacks lights, bells or gates to keep tragedies such as Tuesday morning’s from happening.
The crossing comes off East Main Street in the 800 block. Heavy fog and early morning darkness enshrouded the site, with visibility of around 150 feet judging from photographs taken following the tragedy.
“This is a terrible blow to those young people here at the start of their season,” said BHS Athletc Director Greg Hill, while the school district issued a statement reading “Brownsburg Community School Corporation students and staff are deeply saddened by the tragic death of Jeremy Strange this morning. Strange, a 2004 graduate of Brownsburg High School, was in his first year as head coach of the Boys’ Brownsburg Rugby Club.”