One person was killed Wednesday when a train hit a pickup truck in DeQuincy. (Natalie Stewart / American Press)
Last Modified: Thursday, March 28, 2013 10:03 AM
DEQUINCY — An 81-year-old local man was killed when his pickup truck was hit by a Kansas City Southern train Wednesday, authorities said.
DeQuincy police Officer Doug Phillips said Curtis Sandifer’s pickup was struck at about 3 p.m. at the Holly Street railroad crossing and was dragged about a half- mile.
He said the crossing has signs but no flashing lights, bells or gates to stop vehicles from crossing the tracks.
“There are two other crossings near that crossing that have guards — the LeBlanc Street crossing and the Lake Charles Avenue crossing that both have guards, flashing lights and bells that can be heard from the Holly Street crossing,” Phillips said.
“The train is going to start blowing its whistle well before that crossing, and those crossings were working. If you’re at Holly Street, you can hear the LeBlanc crossing going off and you can hear the train whistle.”
Phillips said witnesses said the train sounded its horn as it traveled down the tracks.
Officials are uncertain if the train was obeying the track speed limit, which is 40 mph. Phillips said the train was equipped with a data recorder that documents speed, horn use and when the brake was engaged.
Detectives are gathering witness statements and trying to determine what caused the collision. It should be three to four days before the investigation is complete, officials said.