(Hustonville, Kentucky March 4, 2017)
A 47-year-old Lincoln County, KY man was killed at approximately 12:30 P.M. Saturday at the ungated and dangerous Norfolk Southern Crossing at Community Center Drive in rural Hustonville, KY. He was described by co-workers as the kind of man the world needs more of.
Allen Braden was pronounced dead at the scene by Lincoln County Coroner Farris Marcum, who noted to Lexington Herald-Leader Reporter Karla Ward that there is not a gate at the railroad crossing that comes down as trains approach. His vehicle was struck by one of the 70 NS freight trains that pass over the road daily at the maximum allowable speed of 50mph.
Statistics archived by the Federal Railroad Administration indicate that Saturdays tragedy was the fourth accident between train and motor vehicles at that crossing since 2002, but none had resulted in death or non-fatal injury. Lexington Channel 18 TV News also learned that many in the community feel that this stretch of railroad crossing where he (Braden) died is dangerous; there is not enough space for cars and the crossing itself is difficult to see because of curves near the tracks¦
The FRA site also revealed that at least three school buses cross there every school day.
WLEX-TV 18 News added that The railroad does have flashing lights and a device that makes noise when a train is approaching, but that many people tell LEX 18 those lights are not always visible when the sun is bright.
Another TV station, WKYT, paraphrased the words of Two Brothers CafÃ© (which fronts the area where the tragedy took place) owner Tommy Pemberton by saying While the crossing has signals, Pemberton hopes in the future there will be another safeguard (gates).
Another co-worker e-mailed WKYT that Allen always had a smile on his face, a kind word on his lips, and love and the Lord in his heart.