ERIE — A tractor-trailer rig hauling corn was struck by a northbound train Sunday afternoon while the truck was turning off Telegraph Road onto Lakeside Road, leaving the truck driver in critical condition, authorities said.
Mark A. LaPointe, 52, of Erie was driving east on Lakeside Road and had stopped at the CSX railroad crossing, just east of south Telegraph Road in Erie Township, according to the Monroe County sheriff's office.
According to witnesses, the railroad crossing was partially obstructed by a stopped southbound locomotive, which was blocking the eastbound lane of Lakeside Road, the sheriff's office reported.
While the crossing arms were down and warning lights activated, Mr. LaPointe traveled around the crossing arms, the sheriff's office said. The truck was then struck in the right side by a northbound CSX Transportation locomotive.
Upon impact, the truck was torn from the trailer where it was pushed about 1,500 feet north of the crossing, coming to rest when the train stopped.
Mr. LaPointe was thrown from the truck and landed along the east side of the railroad tracks, north of the crossing.
He was taken to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center.
The CSX Transportation engineer and conductor were not injured.
The intersection was closed for several hours while the truck and spilled corn were removed.
Anyone with information about the crash is asked to call 734-240-7551.