Chesterton Tribune



CPD: Porter woman struck by train dies

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An elderly Porter woman died on Wednesday after being struck by a train at the Norfolk-Southern railroad grade-crossing on North Jackson Blvd.

Chesterton Police have identified the victim as Lydia Johnston, 76.

Police Chief Dave Cincoski gave this account of the incident.

At approximately 3 p.m. Johnston--who lived only a few blocks from the grade-crossing, off Wagner Road in Downtown Porter--was walking southbound across the tracks, entering Chesterton, when she was hit by the right front side of an eastbound freight train.

Johnston was thrown by the impact and came to rest roughly 10 feet south of the tracks, unconscious and unresponsive. She was immediately transported from the scene to Methodist Hospital Northlake Campus in Gary, where she subsequently died of her injuries.

The Lake County Coronerís Office has listed cause of death as blunt force trauma.

Witnesses advised police that Johnston did appear to see the train and was trying to hasten across the tracks when she was struck, Cincoski said. Her purse was recovered at the scene.

The grade-crossingís gates, lights, and bells were all functioning at the time of the accident, Cincoski added, and the trainís engineer had sounded the horn in the approach to the crossing. The 56-car train, outbound from Chicago, was traveling at 30 miles per hour.

Also responding to the scene: the Chesterton Fire Department and EMS.

Both the North Jackson Blvd. and North 15th Street grade-crossings were closed for around four hours as the accident was being investigated and to allow for the replacement of the trainís crew.


Posted 6/23/2016





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