(Arlington, Kansas – September 3, 2011)
An Abbyville, KS farmer hauling two stock trailers containing two baby lambs with his 2001 Dodge pickup truck, was seriously injured Saturday afternoon about 2:07 P.M. when he was struck by an eastbound Union Pacific freight train at the dangerous, unguarded crossing of UPRR tracks and South Sterling Road near Arlington, KS.
Bronc L. Kraft, 28, was southbound on the Reno County road, and was attempting to cross the tracks which have no lights, bells or gates, but rely solely on passive railroad crossbucks to warn unsuspecting motorists of approaching trains.
Kraft’s trailer jack-knifed, immobilizing his truck on the tracks as the train approached. Kraft jumped free of his truck, only to be struck and injured by the trailer of his vehicle as the train smashed it. The victim was airlifted in serious condition from the scene to Via Christi St. Francis Hospital in Wichita, KS, where he later died. The two baby lambs were uninjured.
Kansas Highway 61 closely parallels UPRR tracks at this crossing, leaving insufficient room for vehicles such as the victim drove to fit between the tracks and the highway.