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Trains are a force to be reckoned with.  According to the McNally Institute, the average train is hauling around 3,000 tons of cargo at around 30 to 50 miles an hour.  Sure, these behemoths slow down (or, are supposed to) in populated areas and through crossings - but that's an incredible amount of momentum.  That's why safety experts agree that automobile drivers have to be extra cautious when crossing railroad tracks.  When a train operator throws the brakes on, it takes about 18 football-field lengths to come to a stop.  That's a fact that one big-rig driver had to learn the hard way in Caddo Parish today (Friday, Feb. 4th).

According to KSLA, an 18-wheeler pulling a car-carrying trailer full of vehicles was travelling down highway 169 in Greenwood near McGee Road when it attempted to drive over the railroad tracks crossing the road.  According to the report, when the truck crossed the tracks, it was struck by a huge Union Pacific Railroad freight train loaded down with cargo.  That incident closed down 4.5 miles of the highway for about 5 hours as crews tried to pick up the pieces and remove the debris.

Two members of the train's crew were taken to a local hospital with injuries after the incident.  Miraculously, the truck's driver escaped completely unscathed - but the same can not be said about his cargo.  A press release from Caddo Parish Sheriff Steve Prator says that at least 3 vehicles were completely ejected from the trailer.

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