DERBY, Conn. (WTNH) — Some Derby drivers worry about a train intersection on Division Street as red lights on Pershing Drive can back up cars.
“It’s kind of confusing and sometimes people get stuck on the tracks,” said Kelsey Brunner. “It’s definitely a hazard.”
“Some people think it’s okay to sit on the track even though there are signs that say don’t sit on the tracks,” said Rhonda Torres.
It’s on many minds after a Metro-North Harlem Line train crashed into an SUV that was stuck in traffic and between the crossing arms in Valhalla, N.Y. Tuesday night. The third rail went through the car and train. Six people died.
“It could happen here,” said Derby’s Denise Stromp.
Derby did see an accident in 2006, and 82-year-old Lina Lucarelli survived the impact. She sat down with News 8’s Kent Pierce back then and recounted the crash.
“The next thing I knew was that barrier that goes in front crashed down on my car and that’s all I remember,” said Lucarelli in a sling.
Despite concerns, Derby police say they’re not going to police the intersection differently, and people need to be aware and read the signs that say “do not stop on tracks.” The Federal Railroad Administration reports that 94-percent of collisions are due to risky behavior on behalf of the driver.
Lawmakers say they want to see changes made to the railroads as many of them gathered near the crash site in New York.
“These gate crossings are literally accidents waiting to happen,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. “Much of the technology used here dates from the last century.”
“The questions about the third rail and about this crossing loom large,” said Sen. Chuck Shumer, D-N.Y. “We need answers.”
The NTSB is still investigating the direct cause of the crash.