Man injured when car collides with freight train

September 09, 2004|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

A Howard County man was injured yesterday morning after his car was hit by a CSX freight train while crossing railroad tracks in northwestern Baltimore County, authorities said.

The 1986 Pontiac Grand Prix was pushed more than 700 yards before the train stopped, the authorities said.

The driver was identified by county police as Arno Bruce Zimmer II, 34, of the 5000 block of Brampton Parkway in Ellicott City. Zimmer was taken to Sinai Hospital, where he was in critical condition last night, a hospital spokeswoman said.

A railroad crossing warning bell was functional and signs are posted at the intersection of the CSX tracks and Byerly Road off Old Hanover Road in Boring, where the 11 a.m. crash occurred, said Bill Toohey, a county police spokesman.

The accident remained under investigation last night. No charges had been filed, Toohey said.

Zimmer, a courier, had been headed south on Byerly Road, police said. The two-engine, four-car freight train was on its way to Baltimore from Hanover, Pa., said CSX spokeswoman Meg Scheu said.

The engineer and conductor on board the train were not injured, she said. The accident did not disrupt other train service, she said.

The train engineer told authorities that he sounded the train's horn as it approached the intersection, said Elise Armacost, a county Fire Department spokeswoman. When CSX officials were examining the train at the crash site yesterday afternoon, the horn was found to be working.

A freight train can require more than a mile to stop, Scheu said.

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