SPRINGDALE TOWNSHIP (KDKA) – A train collided with a tanker truck stuck on railroad tracks Wednesday afternoon in Springdale Township.
The crash happened around noon in the 100 block of Colfax Street, near the PPG Paints Plant.
Officials say the tanker truck became stuck on the tracks, and train was unable to stop.
“It took a little bit to slow down, because it is about a mile long worth of train, so it had a lot of weight behind it,” said Springdale Police Patrolman Robert Patton.
For the driver of the tanker, there was little choice. He had to jump from the cab as a freight train slammed into it.
“He knew he was stuck, he wasn’t going to get off. He saw the train, he abandoned the vehicle,” said Patrolman Patton.
Police say the driver wasn’t ignoring the crossing signal. Instead, the gate came down after he got stuck.
“The crossing gate is automatic,” said Patrolman Patton. “Once the train hits a certain point, it comes down. The truck was already there, so it got stuck on top of it.”
The tracto trailer was hauling a load of resin to the nearby PPG Plant in Springdale. It is not believed to be hazardous, and there were no evacuations.
“No danger to the public whatsoever. Everything’s okay… nothing like that to worry about,” Patrolman Patton said.
The cab of the truck was removed late Wednesday afternoon, but the tanker it was hauling remained on scene as crews tried to figure out how to remove it. The tank took the brunt of the collision and may have prevented a more serious accident.
As for the truck driver, so far there are no tickets or citations.