Trying to beat trains a common occurrence at Arlington crossing - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Jason Miles

Trying to beat trains a common occurrence at Arlington crossing

Clean-up crews will be up all night picking up the pieces of this freight train. It was thrown off the tracks Friday after smashing into an 18-wheeler.

Elizabeth Oldham heard it from her job near the railroad tracks.

"You could hear like metal scraping ground for at least, like, 30 seconds. It was a long noise," Oldham said.

She did not know exactly what it was until she watched the news.

"I knew it was bad. I didn't know it was that bad," Oldham said.

Turns out, the big rig cleared the tracks.

It's trailer full of corn syrup did not.

You could see the liquid sugar dripping from the front of  the engine that smashed right into it.

A second engine and 10 train cars all jumped the tracks after impact. Most of them ended up on their sides. Their payload of brand new automobiles peeking out.

"There were a total of four injuries that we know of. All four people were CSX employees," said Asst. Chief Jim McMillan said.

The driver of the truck, 33 year-old Marlin Liggins of Memphis, escaped without a scratch.

He is now charged with disregarding a railroad crossing.

It is something folks in Arlington say drivers do all the time.    

"And there's no arms on there. I mean, they all try to beat it. Everybody tries to beat the trains out here," Arlington resident Rachel Maccarino said.

It ended badly for Liggins.

The result of his miscalculation likely causing headaches and a lot of heavy lifting for days to come.    

The four train engineers who were taken to The MED suffered only minor injuries.

Fire crews had another concern after making sure everyone was safe. That was containing about 150 gallons of diesel fuel that spilled from the second engine.

Fuel that is now all cleaned up.

Click here to e-mail Jason Miles.

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