A 16-year-old Colombian student and baseball player was struck by a train and killed in Delray Beach on the afternoon of December 8. Reports indicate that the teen was walking on the tracks at the time of the accident and may not have heard the train coming from behind because he was wearing headphones.
The engineer saw the boy at about 2 p.m. and immediately and repeatedly sounded the train’s horn. The teen, however, did not leave the railroad tracks or appear to notice the approaching train, and the engineer was not able to stop the train in time to avoid an impact.
The teen had been studying in America and attending the ELEV|8 Sports Institute, a boarding school that combines an academic curriculum with intense athletic training. His baseball team had been scheduled to play that night, but the game was cancelled after the accident.
The dangers of walking on train tracks
Freight trains can be over two miles long, with each car potentially weighing hundreds of thousands of pounds. Once a freight train is in motion, it takes an incredible amount of energy and a long time to stop it. For this reason, it is almost impossible for an engineer to stop a train if he is close enough to see a person or hazard on the tracks.
While train horns are loud, they are not always loud enough to get the attention of those on the tracks, especially in situations like this one where the victim may have been wearing headphones.
Remember never to walk on or next to train tracks, and to cross them only at marked crossing locations. No shortcut is worth your life.
If you or a loved one has been in an accident involving a train, you may be able to recover compensation. Speak with the personal injury attorneys at the Bradenton firm of Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh to learn your rights and options.