Metra trains on BNSF line not stopping at Clarendon Hills day after collision with semi killed a passenger

Metra trains on the BNSF line were running on a modified weekend schedule Thursday and were not stopping at Clarendon Hills, a day after a collision with a semi truck killed a passenger.

Delays were being reported on the line and Metra urged passengers to check its website and listen to platform announcements.

On Wednesday morning, a woman was killed when her train hit a truck caught in a crossing at Prospect Avenue. The driver got out of the semi before the truck was hit, but four other people on the train were injured: two passengers, a BNSF conductor and a train engineer, who all had minor injuries, Metra said.

Video from news helicopters showed a semitrailer in flames near the crash site.

The train was running on an altered scheduled because of an earlier mechanical problem on another train, Metra said. Train 1242 originated from Downers Grove and was expressing to Union Station when the crash happened.


The National Transportation Safety Board has taken over the investigation. An NTSB spokesman had no immediate comment beyond confirming investigators were headed to the crash site.

It was the second crash in Metra’s history where a passenger aboard a train was killed. In September 2005, an inbound Rock Island train from Joliet derailed and smashed into the 47th Street bridge when it was going nearly 70 mph in a 10 mph zone, killing two women on board and injuring 117.

In that case, the train engineer wasn’t paying attention to track signals telling him to slow down for a track switch, according to an NTSB report released the following year. The agency also cited Metra for failing to see the danger of having a track crossover with a speed limit so low, and for not equipping its locomotives with positive train control, a system that can slow or stop a train when personnel on board fail to do so.