CABAZON — A pedestrian was fatally struck by an eastbound Union Pacific Railroad locomotive, Saturday evening, July 8. The fatal accident happened along the Yuma subdivision in the area of Main Street and Broadway in Cabazon, according to Cal Fire and UPR officials.
The location where the deadly collision occurred is within short walking distance to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Cabazon Station.
Emergency first responders were dispatched to the pedestrian versus train accident at 5:42 a.m., after emergency dispatchers received at least one call reporting the fatal incident, Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Public Information Officer April Newman explained in an incident report.
When they arrived, medical and police officials located a man’s lifeless body on the eastbound tracks. The man had sustained major traumatic injuries when he was struck and run over by the train. He succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The man’s name has not been released, pending Sheriff-Coroner’s identification and notification of his family.
“Our hearts go out to friends and family of the deceased,” Justin Jacobs, Director of Corporate Relations & Media for Union Pacific Railroad’s Western Region said in an e-mail response to a request for further information the morning after the accident.
Although it was not dark and lighting was good, the victim was not at a designating track crossing at the time he was struck, according to officials.
“The safety message here is that pedestrians, and everyone, need to be very aware of the hazards associated with trains and should never be on the train tracks or attempt to cross anywhere other than a designated crossing when signs and signals permit,” Jacobs explained.
“Our locomotive engineer and conductor were immediately put in touch with peer counselors who are also locomotive engineers and conductors as part of our “Peer Support” program,” said Jacobs.
Union Pacific Railroad stopped trains traveling in both directions for just over three hours while sheriff’s, coroner’s and railroad officials conducted an accident investigation and coroner’s officials removed the man’s body from the tracks.
Westbound trains resumed normal operations about 9 p.m. It was not immediately known when eastbound train operations returned to normal.
There were no other reported injuries and the cause of the deadly incident remains under investigation, according to Jacobs.