(Okay, Oklahoma – October 9, 2011)
William Shimack of Okay, Oklahoma, was seriously injured Sunday night about 8:25 P.M. as he attempted to walk across the crossing of Oklahoma Highway 16 and Union Pacific Railroad tracks. As he crossed the tracks he was struck by an empty UPRR coal train headed from Memphis, TN to Wyoming.
Okay Police Chief Fred Winters said the victim walked past a stopped auto to cross the tracks, and the impact with the train threw him into a nearby ditch. Shimack was first taken to Muskogee Regional Medical Center with a compound fracture of his left leg, but was subsequently transferred to St. Francis Hospital in Tulsa, OK for treatment of his injuries.
“Each train has an information box that will show us evidence, like when the brakes were applied and if the horn was sounded by the engineer,” Union Pacific spokeswoman Raquel Espinoza, said. “The lights and signals appeared to have been working, to our knowledge.”
The crossing also has gates, and Chief Winters issued the severely injured victim a citation for “disobeying traffic control signals.”