Thursday, May 14, 2009

Longenecker death ruled an accident

[reported at 5:21 p.m. if anybody's keeping track]

Darke County Coroner Timothy Kathman has ruled the death of Destiny Longenecker an accident. Longenecker was killed when struck by a train in Union City last week. Video from a train-mounted camera showed that Longenecker was struck while trying to cross in front of the train without sufficient time or clearance to make it across. A male companion who crossed in front of the train a moment earlier was cleared of any wrongdoing, as was the conductor who had the train traveling at an appropriate speed.

UPDATE: Here is the official press release:
The Darke County Coroner’s office and Union City, Ohio Police Department have concluded their investigation of thedeath of 18—year—old Destiny Longenecker who was killed in a pedestrian-train accident on May 2, 2009 near the CSX railroad crossing at Deerfield Road in Union City, Ohio.

Review of video from a train-mounted camera provided by CSX Transportation shows Longenecker attempting to cross the tracks in front of the train without sufficient time or clearance to do so. The CSX freight train was travelling at approximately 45 mph, well within the speed limit for train traffic at this location. The crossing gates were down, the bell was functioning normally, and the engineer was sounding the horn as the train approached the crossing. The video also shows a 17—year--old juvenile near the scene who had crossed the track ahead of the train and was not in the immediate vicinity of Longenecker at the time of the collision.

Darke County Coroner, Dr. Timothy Kathman, has ruled Longenecker’s death as accidental.

Timothy B. Kathman, M.D., Darke County Coroner
Harold Schafer, Chief, Union City, Ohio Police
More details: Dayton Daily News.

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