The driver of a pickup truck is dead after being struck by a train in northeast Harris County on Monday morning.
Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said the fatal crash happened shortly before 8 a.m. at 11699 Mesa Dr. near Garrett Road.
@HCSO_VCD units are responding to a fatal crash at 11699 Mesa Dr, near Garrett. A train collided with a truck. The driver of the truck was pronounced deceased at the scene. #HouNews pic.twitter.com/yKcJPRjCBk
— Ed Gonzalez (@SheriffEd_HCSO) October 16, 2023
Deputies said a short, approximately 194-foot train, was traveling northeast-bound on the Union Pacific tracks at the intersection of Mesa and Garrett.
That’s when investigators said the driver of a white GMC pickup truck pulling a homemade utility trailer tried to go around the railroad crossing arms.
“Unfortunately, the train was traveling down the track and wasn’t able to stop due to its momentum. And unfortunately, it collided with the driver’s side of the pickup truck,” Lt. Simon Cheng said.
The truck was pushed 2,400 feet before it came to a stop, Cheng said. The driver was reportedly not wearing a seatbelt.
The driver, who deputies described as a 69-year-old man, was pronounced dead at the scene. The engineer and conductor inside the train were not injured.
“This act of what could be considered impatience isn’t worth someone’s life,” Cheng said.
Several witnesses who were stopped in traffic at the train crossing spoke to investigators after the deadly crash, Cheng said.
Deputies said the driver’s trailer was packed with scrap metal and detached from the pickup truck upon impact.
Mesa and Garrett are shut down in the area as the investigation continues.