3 escape injury in car-train crash in Elk River

  • Article by: MARY LYNN SMITH
  • Star Tribune
  • February 18, 2014 - 9:02 PM

Three people escaped injury when their car was struck Tuesday evening by an eastbound Northstar train in Elk River.

After their escape, the car was struck by a westbound train, said Elk River Police Chief Brad Rolfe.

Police said the woman driving the car and two male passengers were headed south on Jackson Avenue NW. and stopped at the railroad crossing, where the signals were working and the crossing arms were down. The driver told police that “she thought she could beat the train” when she drove onto the tracks about 5:15 p.m.

Rolfe said the woman then tried to make a U turn between the two crossing arms to head north when the first train struck the front of her car. “The car was spun around and they got out of the car uninjured,” he said. The car ended up on the westbound tracks and was struck by another train, Rolfe said.

He said he wasn’t sure how fast the trains were going but said that typically they travel between 50 and 65 miles per hour there.

Northstar trains were delayed and buses were used to transport commuters.

The crash was the second train-car collision this week. A woman and her infant son escaped injury Monday when their car was hit by a Northstar train at another Elk River crossing.

Metro Transit and Elk River police are investigating.

Mary Lynn Smith

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