A man was killed early today when he was hit by a freight train in Laurel, an accident that briefly shut down MARC commuter trains and caused delays for at least 1,500 commuters between Baltimore and Washington.
Police released few details of the incident, which occurred about 2:50 a.m. at Main Street and Lafayette Avenue in Prince George's County near the Howard County line.
Laurel police said the unidentified man was struck by a northbound CSX freight train and pronounced dead at the scene.
Jim Epperlein, of the Mass Transit Administration, said one MARC train headed to Washington and two trains going to Baltimore were canceled. Others, he said, experienced delays of one to two hours.
North and southbound tracks were shut down in Laurel from 5:30 to 7:30 a.m. Mr. Epperlein said passengers were forced to wait aboard trains until authorities allowed one track to open on the Camden line.
To compensate, MARC allowed its express train, which usually operates nonstop between BWI Airport and Washington, to make stops in Odenton, Bowie, Seabrook and New Carrollton. That train runs on the Penn line.
"We got the word out early enough," Mr. Epperlein said. "Basically, for most customers, we were looking at about a 60-minute delay.