Railroad News

Elderly Couple Die At Non-Gated Norfolk Southern Railroad Crossing

(Herndon, Pennsylvania – June 22, 2011)

A 78-year-old man and his 76-year-old wife, both long-time residents of the Northumberland County, PA hamlet of Herndon, died instantly when their car was struck by a Norfolk Southern freight train at the only public rail crossing in town.

Possibly confused, Earl Hollenbach, with his wife, Edith Hollenbach as the passenger, drove around a stopped vehicle and across the Pottsville Street crossing of Norfolk Southern rails, and into the path of the oncoming train. The crossing has two mast-mounted sets of flashing light signals but no crossing gates.

“Hours after the crash, crews were testing the lights at the crossing,” according to WNEP-TV. Norfolk Southern spokesman Rudy Husband claimed the train was a Canadian Pacific train heading from Binghamton, NY, southbound to Enola, PA, but film footage of the crash scene clearly showed the locomotives to be Norfolk Southern.