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article imageAmtrak Train Crashes Into SUV; 6 dead

By Paul Bright     May 8, 2007 in Travel
6 dead as an SUV is rammed by an Amtrak train in California
6 people are dead as an SUV loses a battle with an AMTRAK train. In Riverbank, California, a woman attempted to beat a train across the tracks before it arrived. She wasn’t able to make it and her SUV- a Geo Tracker- crashed, ejecting one and instantly killing the four people inside it. The Tracker passengers were one woman, two teenagers and three children. The crash occurred at the intersection of Claribel road and Terminal Avenue, right across the street from the Riverbank Army Ammunition plant.
So far, none of the 70 people in the train has been reported injured or dead. The train cars were commuter cars that travel between Bakersfield and Oakland. Known as San Joaquin 713, the train left Bakersfield at 10:15am and was scheduled to arrive at destination by 4:15pm .
Witnesses report that she was no more than 20 feet from the train when she attempted to drive across the tracks. The woman had initially hit one of the railroad track arm guards. She was attempting to back up and cross the tracks but got stuck. One witness, Bill Ingalls, was on the other side of the tracks waiting for the train to pass. He witnessed the whole event.
"The worst part was I could see it happening," Ingalls said. "She didn’t look panicked at all. The train was 20 feet from her, and she drives right over the tracks."
At this moment, none of the passengers are allowed out of the train. Reports say that AMTRAK will provide free transportation by bus for those passengers once they are allowed out of the train.
As of press time, no one knows how fast the commuter train was going, but it is authorized to go 79 miles per hour through that intersection. More to follow as events unfold.
More about Train crash, Amtrak crash, Amtrak crash california
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