A 71-year-old woman narrowly escaped serious injury here after an Amtrak train struck her car Wednesday morning.
The woman, Phillis Stroud, tried to cross the train tracks, when she noticed the cars ahead of her were not moving forward, her daughter, Lorie Price said.
She then noticed a train coming from her left side as the arm bar on the tracks started to come down on her vehicle. She put her car in reverse to get off the tracks and avoid being hit. But before she could fully remove her car off the train tracks, the train struck the front of her vehicle.
“She was extremely fortunate,” Captain Joe Binns said.
Stroud’s daughter, Price, agrees.
“I’m just glad she’s not (as) injured as she could be,” Price said.
She said her mother texted her after the incident to tell her what happened. Price just happened to be in Garner. When she called her mom back, her mom was crying.
“She was trying to talk but really couldn’t,” Price, a Willow Spring resident, said. “I just dropped everything. We just came flying. I put on the emergency hazards and flew over here.”
Price said her mother, who works at the Garner Senior Center, is someone who is “tremendously careful” and would never park her car in the middle of train tracks. She said she often gets text messages from her mom warning her about being safe driving.
“Visibly she’s OK,” Price said. “She’s able to walk. They didn’t have to take her out on a stretcher.”
Stroud sustained only minor injuries and was treated inside an ambulance at the scene.
The wreck happened about 10:55 a.m. near the intersection of East Main Street and New Rand Road.
At the time of the incident, 141 passengers were on the train. There were no reported injuries to passengers or crew members.
The train, Amtrak Train 80, was suspended for an hour and a half before it resumed service,
“Amtrak is cooperating with the investigation,” Kimberly Woods, a spokesperson for Amtrak, said in an email.
Amtrak Train 80 travels daily between Charlotte and New York City.
Binns, the police captain, said the police department will not investigate the incident further. He said the wreck was not as bad as it could have been. The train’s conductor was applying its emergency brakes and the woman was almost off the tracks at the time the train collided with her car.
Binns said he recommends drivers not go over the track when there is a car on the other side.
A previous version of this story said there were about five passengers on the train. There were 141 passengers on the train.