FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) — Authorities in Fort Worth say a teenager was struck and killed by a train while walking on the tracks on Thursday morning.
Initial reports were that the victim was a child, but investigators are now saying the victim is 14-years-old.
The teen, whose name has not been released, was on his way to school and doing something a lot of students do — crossing the tracks as a shortcut.
“The train sounded its air horn and put on its emergency brakes in an attempt to avoid striking the male,” said Raymond Bush with the Fort Worth Police Department. “The male did not appear to hear the train behind him. The train did strike the male.”
The accident happened in the Edge Cliff Village area, south of Interstate-20.
Lyndsey Perez lives near where the accident happened and says the shortcut is frequently traveled. “You see kids walking all the time there’s kids always walking around here.”
The student may have been wearing headphones or ear buds. Investigators say the train engineer called the accident in.
Friends of the teen are having a hard time understanding how he couldn’t hear or feel the train coming. The boy’s friend, Tristan Fenn, said, “I couldn’t stand! I could hardly breathe! I just fell.”
Senior Korey Hasty remembered his friend fondly. “He was always the guy to be there for you.”
A spokesman with Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad says that the train is equipped with a camera that should have captured video of the incident.
Sgt. Bush is reminding the public about the dangers of walking on or near train tracks.
“We need to really remind people that railroad crossing are owned by the railroad companies. It’s actually illegal to walk on them,” said Bush. “It’s extremely dangerous to be on railroad tracks or near trains whether they’re running or not.”
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