(Vanndale, Arkansas – October 5, 2018)
A 77-year-old driver of a 2016 Subaru Forester headed east was killed Friday afternoon about 2:15 pm, CDT, in Vanndale, AR, when she and her passenger, believed to be a close relative, were struck by a southbound Union Pacific train. The collision occurred at the dangerous and unguarded intersection of Cross County Road 358 and UPRR tracks.
The driver, Carole M. Perry, died at the scene. Severely injured and airlifted to a Memphis hospital was Lillian Perry, 37, also of Memphis, TN. The motorists’ view of the oncoming train was obstructed by a trackside building at the crossing where a daily average of two UP trains cross at a maximum allowable speed of 40 mph. The fact that the crossing was not equipped with flashing lights and crossing gates was also a principal factor in this collision.
Federal Railroad Administration records revealed the occurrence of one earlier, non-injury accident at the crossing.
The Arkansas State Police and Cross County Sheriff’s Department were investigating the tragedy.