(West Palm Beach, Florida – July 6, 2016)
A 24-year-old Riviera Beach, FL woman was rushed to St. Mary’s Medical Center in West Palm Beach Wednesday morning after her car collided with an Amtrak passenger train. The collision occurred on former CSX tracks now owned and operated by the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority at the signalized, triple track crossing of 25th Street and Windsor Avenue in West Palm Beach.
Taira Lee, the victim, was admitted to the hospital in critical condition according to authorities.
Extremely concerning for law enforcement was reports by eye-witnesses of prior and immediate problems with the lights and gates at the crossing. WPBF-TV, Channel 25 News Reporter Stephanie Berzinski told viewers that “this particular railroad crossing has had problems in the past and crews were on scene fixing it Tuesday night.”
A daily average of 54 trains, including both Amtrak and SFRTA commuter passenger trains, cross daily at a maximum allowable speed of 55 mph.
According to records maintained by the Federal Railroad Administration, the collision Wednesday morning was the seventh to occur there, and that three past accidents have resulted in fatalities. In addition, Wednesday’s crash marked the sixth non-fatal injury suffered by either motorists or passengers at the intersection.