(Miami, Texas – September 6, 2017)
A 27 year old semi driver from Pampa, TX was killed at the dangerous and unguarded road/rail intersection of Rafter L Road and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad tracks early Wednesday afternoon at about 2:00 P.M., CDT. The location of the collision is about six miles east of Miami, TX. The BNSF freight train, one of the 72 trains that cross there at a maximum allowable speed of 70 mph crushed the passenger side of his truck tractor
Rustin Horton was pronounced dead at the scene by Roberts County Justice of the Peace Tresa Seuhs after he failed to see the eastbound BNSF train approaching the crossing as he was operating his rig southbound. The collision occurred at one of the two main railroad tracks paralleling U.S. Highway 60.
It is likely the victim was not aware of the train until too late. It is virtually certain that if this crossing was protected by active warning devices, this collision and the eight before it would not have occurred. Both Union Pacific 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%