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2 women survive ordeal along Indiana rail bridge

2 women survive ordeal on 80-foot-tall Indiana rail bridge after freight train surprises them
Posted on July 30, 2014 at 12:00 a.m. | Updated on July 30, 2014 at 10:19 a.m.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — A video camera captured the terrifying plight of two women as a freight train bore down on them as they walked along an 80-foot-high railroad bridge in Indiana.

The women lay down on the tracks as the train went over them and survived the July 10 incident, which happened just before sunrise on a bridge northeast of Bloomington. Authorities are reviewing the video (http://bit.ly/1s53bnj) for potential criminal charges.

The engineer of the 100-car, 14,000-ton coal train activated its emergency brakes when he saw the women, who began to run.

“They’re frankly running for their lives at this point in time,” Indiana Rail Road spokesman Eric Powell told WTHR-TV on Tuesday while reviewing the video footage.

The two had few choices, as jumping from the tracks would have seriously injured or killed them. Instead, one woman lies flat between the tracks immediately, while the other stumbles before doing the same.

“He had thought he had killed the two people here on this bridge,” Powell said of the train driver. “... Both duck at the last minute.

“How they survived that is nothing short of a miracle.”

Officials say the women have been identified but have not released their names. Train personnel saw them drive away after they had climbed down from the bridge and wrote down their license plate number.

Monroe County deputy prosecutor Jeff Kehr told the Herald-Times of Bloomington that Indiana Rail Road officials have turned over evidence to the sheriff’s department.

The department will review the incident for potential criminal charges, Monroe County Prosecutor Chris Gaal said, but until then, he said it’s inappropriate for prosecutors to comment on the case.

Powell said people sometimes follow a trail up to the railroad bridge and trespass on that bridge.

“It’s dangerous, but it’s easy for people to get on the tracks and walk on there,” he said.




 Michael Jackson tribute artist C.J. Williams shops for an upcoming party at a grocery store in Merrillville, Ind., on Sept. 10, 2014.  For fellow Gary native CJ Williams, being a Michael Jackson tribute artist is not about mimicking the spins and splits. It's about paying homage to the King of Pop.  Williams, who took third place at a recent talent contest in Gary coinciding with the anniversary of Jackson's birthday, has spent 12 years as an impersonator.  He has performed in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Ohio and has plans to take his show farther.  (AP Photo/The Times, Jonathan Miano )  MANDATORY CREDIT; CHICAGO LOCALS OUT;  GARY OUT

Posted at 12:00 a.m.
 Thomas Hood, left, is assisted by Alice Parrish, as he gets items from the Mark of Discipleship Food Pantry in Spencer, Ind. on Sept. 10, 2014.   Hood lives with three dumped dogs in a dilapidated 1982 Chevrolet Rockwood recreational vehicle that’s traveled 81,000 miles and has an expired 2008 license plate on the back.  That RV, Hood’s home, may have finally found a permanent parking space thanks to kindness bestowed upon him by strangers , including a local accountant, a grocery store owner and a property owner and several county officials who asked to go unnamed who were intent on making sure the man can live his simple life without fear of being run off.   (AP Photo/The Herald-Times, Jeremy Hogan)

Posted at 12:00 a.m.
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