Eyes on the Street: Car Collides with Southbound Train on Expo/Blue Line Tracks
If you’ve ever taken the Blue Line (or Expo Line) headed south, you know that riding the section between San Pedro station and Pico is like watching paint dry.
It is torturously slow.
Which may be why drivers feel they can outrun the train. I’ve seen people squeak through the intersection on red at Pico just as a train was leaving that station on more than one harrowing occasion.
I can’t say for sure that the feeling he could beat the train was why the driver above decided to turn in front it yesterday afternoon, but there’s a good chance it was, given an account by an eyewitness who lived in the building across the street.
It’s a bit of a puzzle to me. There is no shortage of signals at that intersection — those turning left onto the freeway onramp have their own sets of lights.
They have three, as a matter of fact, and a flashing “train” signal for added good measure (below the stoplight, below).
But, sometimes when people are excited to get on the freeway, they jump the gun and they get their bumper torn off by the train.
Just as an FYI for all you folks out there that want to test your mettle against a train, please note that the train, even moving at its snail’s pace, was only able to come to a complete stop 40 or more feet beyond the original collision point.
And the massive response it elicited — four fire trucks and several police vehicles — backed the traffic up and forced police to divert cars to the sidewalks.
Thankfully, it appeared that no one was hurt. The firemen were packing up to leave within minutes of their arrival.
Don’t drive and race trains, kids.