A Middle Georgia man was killed and his grandson was injured Thursday after a train crashed into their car.
Melvin Turner, 61, of Reynolds, was driving across the train tracks on Crest Hill Street with his 11-year-old grandson, police said. While stop signs are in the area, there are no crossing arms.
According to Reynolds police Chief Lonnie Holder, the train pushed the car a mile down the road and into a ravine.
Officers responded to the call around 4:30 p.m. Turner and his grandson were flown to a hospital after authorities got them out of the car. Holder said the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office was monitoring the area and saw the crash. Reynolds is in Taylor County, about 100 miles south of downtown Atlanta.
The mixed-freight Norfolk Southern train was on its way to Macon when the incident occurred, Norfolk Southern spokeswoman Rachel Bradshaw said. The accident caused no reported injuries to the train’s crew.
“Norfolk Southern advises motorists and pedestrians to stay alert around railroad tracks, and to be mindful of all warning signs and signals at railroad crossings,” Bradshaw said in a statement.
Holder said Crest Hill is not a busy street, and the crossing does have a railroad crossing sign and reflective tape along with the stop signs.
Electric crossing signals, which are at least $300,000 to install, are placed by most states’ department of transportation based on train and car traffic, train speed and accident history in that area, Bradshaw said.
Holder told local news outlets that this is the first deadly crash at the Crest Hill Street railroad crossing.
Turner was pronounced dead at the hospital. Holder did not know the grandson’s condition but said the boy was still in the intensive care unit of the hospital Thursday night.
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