Brightline train accident 911 call: Cyclist didn’t stop for train


Two 911 calls reporting Wednesday’s fatal Brightline train accident were released Friday by Boynton Beach Police.

One call is from a witness and the second is from a Florida East Coast Railway dispatcher.

A northbound Brightline train struck and killed Jeffrey King, 51, at Ocean Avenue.

The witness, who did not give his name, said “there was a train coming through and this person was riding his bicycle and did not stop (inaudible) and (inaudible) through the gates and he barely got hit by the train.”

The dispatcher asks if the person barely got hit or got struck.

“It makes a difference,” she said.

The man answered: “He got struck by the train.”

The dispatcher then asks if the man is injured.

“I’m pretty sure he’s dead,” he says.

The dispatcher says: “Do we know where the body wound up after the train?”

“I don’t know,” he said. “I’m not sure where the body is.”

The second 911 call is not as detailed. The caller says a northbound train near Boynton Beach Boulevard struck a bicyclist.

King was on his way home from Troy’s Barbeque, where he worked as a dishwasher. Police said King tried to beat the train while on his bicycle and pedaled around the safety gates. Zedrick Barber II, King’s family attorney, on Thursday called for the Department of Transportation to investigate Brightline’s safeguards at the crossings.

This was the second fatal train accident involving Brightline is less than one week.

On Jan. 12, another northbound Brightline train struck and killed Melissa Lavell near the intersection of Northeast Sixth Avenue in Boynton Beach. Lavell, 32, was with another person, who safely made it across the tracks. Police said they were trying to beat the train.

The two deaths occurred within a mile of each other.

At a news conference Friday , Brightline officials announced plans to place “safety ambassadors” and electronic signs at key railroad crossings to warn the public to stay off the train tracks.



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