3 Kids Among 6 Killed When Train Struck SUV At Florida Railroad Crossing

Train strikes SUV at Florida Railroad Crossing

Photo: Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office

Six people, including three children, were killed when a train smashed into a Cadillac Escalade at a railroad crossing in Hillsborough County, Florida, on Saturday (September 23) night. 

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said that the driver of the SUV, 52-year-old Jose Guadalupe Hernandez, tried to cross the tracks even though the crossing was "controlled by a stop sign and a railroad crossing sign." The crossing was not equipped with a warning bell or arms to block the tracks.

"For unknown and undetermined reasons, the driver slowly crossed the tracks directly in the train's path," the sheriff's department said in a news release.

Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said that the SUV looked "like a soft drink can that's been smashed."

"As you can imagine, the carnage that's created when these two collide," he said. "The SUV we can see from the video begins to catapult and flip violently several times before it's landed a distance from this crossing."

The impact caused the five rear passengers to be ejected from the SUV.

The other victims were identified as Enedelia Hernandez, 50,  Alyssa Hernandez, 17, Anaelia Hernandez, 22, and Julian Hernandez, 9.

A seventh passenger, 23-year-old Guillermo E. Gama III, was taken to the hospital and is in critical condition.

"I continue to ask our community to keep this family, their loved ones, and first responders in their thoughts," 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."

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