Concerns Grow After Trolley Hits Van In Bethel Park

BETHEL PARK (KDKA) – A Port Authority trolley collided with a van in Bethel Park Tuesday morning.

While no one was hurt, people are questioning if traffic lights at the intersection are enough to avoid this type of accident in the future.

The accident happened at the intersection of Library and Logan Roads around 8:30 a.m.

Traffic lights at the intersection control both motorist and trolley traffic.

However, some are questioning whether those lights are enough.

One driver said with no crossing gates, caution is a must when crossing the tracks.

“There’s no gate or anything so you have to make sure to watch for the lights,” one woman said.

A spokesperson with the Port Authority said it was an inbound trolley on the Blue Line which was involved in the accident. There were no passengers on board at the time.

Traffic lights control the flow of traffic for vehicles and the trolley at the intersection.

One rider said sometimes it’s not always enough, as he witnessed a car get hit by a trolley a few weeks ago after the car ran a light.

“I watch a lot of people run them. As in, when the light comes on, they still think they have five seconds,” he said.

It is important to note that the trolleys aren’t always separated from traffic, so it’s very important for drivers to also pay attention.


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More from Heather Abraham
  • B. Joel

    It’s ok I’m in the North Hills, so we don’t have to worry about having a convenient transit system. We get the friendly PAT busses that have one stop on a 20 mile stretch of road. Oh wait we used to have trolley lines that ran North, but I guess it was more important to make half finished river tunnels that go nowhere than revitalize and expand our existing system.

  • TB

    There are a lot of houses for sale in the South Hills. You could relocate and take advantage of our great system.

  • nate

    Then when they move here. They will shut the line down. Like the Brown line.

  • Debi

    we love our trolleys here uin Bethel Park…can’t wait till we can be delivered to the front door of Heinz Field too!

    • south side born

      debi why on earth would you give a rats ass about the steelers youre not even from pittsburgh you aint city

  • john

    This is a railroad-type crossing controlled by a regular traffic signal. The state just spent a lot of money upgrading this crossing, but they failed to install crossing gates, which turns out to be a big mistake. Expect to see more issues if crossing gates are not installed, because people turning onto Logan Road from Route 88 do not expect to see a red light so close to the intersection. I see people inadvertantly going through the red light all the time, and since the approaching Blue Line trains are hidden by nearby structures and trees, they almost appear out of nowhere.

    • JP Gibb

      Port Authority has been talking about putting up gates for at least the 15 years I’ve been riding the T, but Bethel Park keeps blocking them because BP claims it’ll cause traffic to back up. The gates on the Overbrook line don’t seem to have caused any problems in Castle Shannon though.

      First place gates need to be installed is where the tracks cross 88 at Sandy Creek Apts. Nearly every morning I see someone ignore the lights, bells and horns and race across just in front of the T.

  • Bethel Band Geek

    I pass this crossing at least once daily. It doesnt need a gate. Accidents do happen. If you want to avoid accidents like this slow down, be alert, observe road signs, and put down your phone, beverage, makeup, cigarette, etc

    • John

      There is no basis to conclude that the driver of the automobile was at fault. I am at a loss to understand how peolple like you continually make judgments based on five seconds worth of information. Try to wait for the whole story, and keep your half-baked opinions to yourself.

  • Pat

    The trolley crosses plenty of intersections without gates, they slow down and sound the bells, if the idiots driving don’t see them, they should be on the T not driving

    • John

      A person has been involved in a serious accident. They deserve sympathy, not the derisive label “idiot.” Even a near perfect driver can make a mistake, if indeed it was driver error (a point not established). If a person trips and falls, it’s not necessarily because they were careless or hurrying; they might simply have tripped over something. Your snarley comment is unnecessary. If an idiot like you can’t understand that, you should get off the Internet.

      • JP Gibb

        There are signs that warn of a railroad crossing. There are lights that come on when a T is approaching. The T drivers blow their horns and/or ring their bells when they come to a crossing. If you ignore all that and attempt to beat the trolley, as I see people do every day, then you are, in fact, an idiot. Too many drivers either drive distracted (Put down the @$%# cell phone), or just have a “Me First!” attitude.

      • Stush

        Marty Griffin calls people idiots and morons everyday, if you hit a streetcar that can’t go any where EXCEPT on the tracks… my friend are an idiot

  • Chris

    The intersection in Bethel Park that NEEDS a gate is the one along Brightwood and Highland. People come flying across those tracks trying to beat others at opposing stop signs, and they think they can outrun a trolley. Too many near misses there, with trolley passengers being thrown about by the driver having to brake hard to not hit the idiot.

    • Tim

      Definitely! I can only assume there is no sound here but flashing lights only because I didn’t hear anything (it was during the day so maybe I didn’t see the lights flashing) I went through to make a left onto Brightwood and had just passed over the inbound (to Pittsburgh) rails when I got tooted at by an outbound trolley operator who was about 5 trolley-lengths away from me. Definitely considered myself a good driver and still can’t believe I missed the crossing lights. Gates would be good.

      • Heather

        That’s a scary story. I’m glad you made it through without a collision happening. For the money they are spending on the tunnel they are building under the river, they could elevate the tracks along Brightwood to eliminate all those dangerous crossings.

  • John

    So give up your license why don’t you? If you’re making assumptions about who was at fault, if anyone, you’re probably not bright enough to operating a motor vehicle anyway.

    • Sandra J. Bullock

      I wish you had to get a license to post on these message boards. It would silence those like John who is not bright enough to comment on it. Save the rage for your wife, kids, and dog.

  • Chris

    Tim, glad you were okay, and you’ll never go across those tracks without looking thrice again, I bet. If only everyone would be so careful!

    • Tim

      Heather and Chris, Thanks to both of you for expressing your concerns. It did scare me and Chris, I definitely do look ‘thrice’ before crossing!

  • Critter

    Stupid people make stupid drivers. You want gates, go to heaven.

  • focalvapors

    I could swear this is the same van that went speeding down my street and ran the stop sign this morning while I was waiting for the bus with my daughter. I would love to know if this is the same van. If it is he got what he had coming… I live in the south hills so. Red extended van with no logos on it???

    • focalvapors

      Odd thing, ever since the day of this accident the large red van that used to barrel down my street at triple the speed limit every morning doesn’t come by. I wonder why that is? Saved a brick thru his windshield I guess.

      So is your Mom proud of you? How is being an internet smart a$$ know it all working out for you? In the real world I’ll crush you…

    • Jake

      Not likely, as this happened in Bethel Park, not Belzhoover.

      • focalvapors

        Wow! What an intelligent reply… Your Mom must be so proud of you. Go upstairs and ask her if she’s proud of you.

        It’s Beltzhoover not Belzhoover…

      • Jake

        You would know.

  • Hotel6

    Lay off the cool aid.

  • warrington pool

    i live in beltzhoover and my mom is a trolley driver she be the best dwiver they is once her was sleep and i said yo beatch wake up yous gots to go to woke she said shut up mo fo i be sleep i said dat aint nice she said jump in the lake mo fo i said ok

    • kalinas bar

      dig that

  • Burghnerdman

    Thank God it was only the “T”. If it would have been a real train, I don’t know what could have happened.
    Anytime there is a “Rail Road Crossing”, every driver should be extra carefull. Too many people put to much faith even in a gating system. You know, there are failures from time to time.

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