Police: Man Drove Around Gate, Hit by Train in W. Medford
The car was destroyed in the accident and the train sustained a few scrapes, police said.
A car was crushed in an accident with a train this morning at the High Street rail crossing after its driver went around the lowered crossing gates, according to transit police.
The man, who is about 60 years old, drove his Buick LeSabre with New Hampshire plates around the gates about 8 a.m. and was struck by an Amtrak Downeaster train headed for Boston, Deputy Transit Police Chief Robert Lenehan said Thursday morning.
"This fellow was the first person in line and apparently did not want to wait for the train to cross," Lenehan said.
The driver was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital to be treated for minor injuries, Lenehan said. The accident was cleared by 9:30 a.m., but it caused major delays to the Lowell commuter rail line, including the cancellation of several trains the morning.
The car was hit near the front side tire and was pushed about 30 feet into the flag guard's station, pushing the small structure off its foundation, Lenehan said. Amtrak trains, which do not stop in Medford, typically pass through the intersection at about 35 miles per hour, Lenehan said.
The car was totalled in the accident and the train sustained a few scrapes, Lenehan said.
"That's a lot of tons of steel, and it's always going to win," he said
The Federal Railroad Administration has raised issues with the safety of the intersection in the past, but Lenehan said there had been few recent issues there.
"I think this thing has been engineered about as well as it can be," he said.