(Saybrook, Illinois – March 17, 2016)
An as-yet unnamed male motorist was injured last Friday morning at about 9:36 A.M., CDT, when his pickup truck was struck by a Norfolk Southern freight train at the dangerous and unguarded crossing of NS rails and Lincoln Street in Saybrook, IL.
The NS/Lincoln Street intersection is not equipped with any active warning devices, such as lights and gates. It is virtually certain that if this crossing was equipped with lights and gates, this collision would not have happened. Both Norfolk Southern 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 accidents by as much as 96%.
According to Federal Railroad Administration-provided statistical information, the crossing, where a daily average of five NS trains crosses at a maximum allowable speed of 10 mph, was the site of a single previous collision.
The victim of Friday’s incident was treated for cuts on his head but did not require hospitalization. The McLean County Sheriff’s Department investigated the collision, which shut down every crossing in Saybrook for quite some time as the idled train stretched across the community.