(Brantwood, Wisconsin – June 25, 2016)
A 76-year-old female, believed to be the spouse of the 76-year-old male driver, died of her injuries from a late morning collision between the couple’s pickup truck and a westbound Canadian National freight train at the dangerous and unguarded crossing of Price County Highway D near Brantwood, WI Saturday.
Neither the driver nor the passenger was identified by name or city of residence, and each was taken to a separate hospital. The woman was transported to Aspirus Wausau Hospital, where she later succumbed to her injuries, while the man was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Marshfield, WI, where he remains hospitalized for his serious accident-resultant injuries.
The intersection of CN rails and Highway D is not equipped with any active warning devices, such as lights and gates, to warn motorists of the approach of the two daily CNR trains which cross there at a maximum allowable speed of 35 mph, according to Federal Railroad Administration records. It is virtually certain that if this crossing was equipped with lights and gates, this collision would not have happened. Both Canadian National 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%.
The FRA also said that there had been another collision at the crossing in 2007, but that no injuries resulted from that crash.