By Dave Taylor
A county man was unhurt in an unusual accident that ended with his car being hit by a train.
Raymond Staples, Jr., 46, was driving a 2000 Pontiac Grand Am Friday night, when he drove through a rural intersection and wound up partly on train tracks.
Sheriff’s Deputy Jeff Hendrick worked the scene and said that Staples was traveling down Lee Henderson Road at about 10:20 p.m. when he came to the intersection with Henderson Grove Road, where the options are to turn right or left.
Staples told Hendrick he fell asleep and continued through the intersection.
“He went straight, jumped the ditch, went all the way through the people’s yard there that live at the end,” Hendrick said. “He went straight through that yard, between trees, all the way through the back and went through their backyard onto the railroad tracks.”
“He got onto the tracks, couldn’t get the car off the tracks,” he said. “The front end was on the tracks. Not the whole car, but just the front end.”
Staples was unhurt but called 911 to tell them his car was partly on the track, but the cell phone calls went instead to Indiana.
“Before he could contact anybody to tell them his car was on the track a train came,” he said. “The train hit the front end of the car, knocked it around in a circle and then hit the back end of the car and threw it off the tracks upside down.”
The car was towed from the scene, and Hendrick said that the cause might have been that Staples fell asleep, but he had also gone a long way off the road for the conditions.
“He was probably traveling at a high rate of speed,” he said.