A freight train hit an SUV over the weekend, killing six, ABC reports. The crash took place Saturday night in Hillsborough County, Florida. Three adults and three children were killed. One passenger survived but is reportedly in critical condition.
According to the police statement, the crash happened about 7:00 p.m. when the driver of a white Cadillac Escalade crossed a set of train tracks directly in the path of the train. It is currently not known why the driver was on the tracks when the train hit them. Five people were ejected from the SUV and were declared dead at the scene. Emergency responders were able to rescue the driver and the front passenger with the jaws of life and both were taken to the hospital. The driver later passed away overnight.
The occupants were reportedly all members of the same family plus a family friend. When the train hit the SUV, it reportedly rolled over multiple times and landed a significant distance from where it was initially hit. They were reportedly headed to a nearby quinceañera.
“I continue to ask our community to keep this family, their loved ones, and first responders in their thoughts,” Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement. “This tragic loss is immense, and the members of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and I are praying for peace and comfort for all those impacted.”
The railroad crossing has a stop sign, but there are no flashing lights or crossing arms to alert drivers that a train is coming. Those would normally be required by law, but the crossing in question is reportedly on private property, which means neither has to be installed. Had they been, one rail safety expert told ABC News it likely would have saved everyone’s lives.