(Lena, Illinois – August 28, 2020)
An as-yet unidentified delivery van driver is dead after his southbound 2018 Econoline E350 was struck by a Canadian National freight train. The collision occurred Friday afternoon at about 1:30 PM, CDT at the unguarded railroad crossing on Baker Road in Lena, IL.
Stephenson County Sheriff’s officials and the county coroner were withholding the victim’s name pending notification of next of kin.
The now-deadly crossing had neither flashing lights nor crossing gates to warn motorists of the approach of the 11 daily trains that cross Baker Road at a maximum allowable speed of 50 mph. It is virtually certain that lights and gates could have prevented this collision. Canadian National and Operation Lifesaver know that lights and gates are the most effective type of protection at railroad crossings. Studies that have been conducted over fifty years ago confirm that lights and gates offer the ability to drastically reduce the number of vehicle/train collisions by as much as 96%.