Train crash closes stretch of TV Highway - KPTV - FOX 12

Police: Driver on cell phone led to collision with train

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Photo: Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue Photo: Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue
BEAVERTON, OR (KPTV) -

Police said a driver on a cell phone was hit by a train, in a crash that closed TV Highway in Beaverton Friday.

Beaverton police said 38-year-old Denis Pittman was on his cell phone and not paying attention to the road, when he approached the tracks near Southwest 139th Avenue at a slow speed. He had his left hand up to the left side of his head, and witnesses said they tried to wave to the driver about the approaching train, according to police.

Though the train whistle blew, Pittman continued past the stop sign and onto the tracks, where the train smashed into his Honda CRV, police said. The train is estimated to have been going about 25 mph at the time.

Pittman's car flipped over, and he was injured in the wreck.

Police and firefighters responded and found the Honda on its top, just south of the tracks around 11:30 a.m. They removed Pittman from the car and took him to a hospital.

The 1,150' long train was loaded with rocks and weighed 25,000 tons. There was no hazardous material on board.

Police said Pittman is expected to be released from the hospital soon. Once he is, he'll be cited with failure to stop at a railroad signal, and operating a motor vehicle while using a mobile communication device.

While crews cleaned up the crash scene, the highway was closed at 142nd Avenue.

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