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Driver escapes injury, semi totaled in collision with train

September 25, 2018

SCOTTSBLUFF — A Wyoming man was fortunate and didn’t suffer any visible injuries after his vehicle collided with a train east of Scottsbluff Tuesday.

Authorities were called to the Rebecca Winters crossing on Highway 26 and South Beltline at 7:34 a.m. to a report of a semi vs. train collision. According to a Scotts Bluff County Sheriff’s Office press release, the driver of the semi, Bill Searle, 68, of Ft. Laramie, Wyoming, was northbound on South Beltline. As Searle approached Highway 26, his brakes failed and he swerved into another lane to avoid hitting vehicles that were stopped for a westbound train. The semi struck the crossing arm and the train.

Searle had no visible injuries, but was transported to Regional West Medical Center for further evaluation.

The semi is a total loss while the trailer did not sustain significant damage. There is no damage estimate for the railroad equipment.

Valley Ambulance, Scottsbluff Rural Fire Department, Scottsbluff Police Department and the Nebraska State Patrol assisted. Burlington Northern Santa Fe officials also responded to the scene.

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