The link above is to a story about a woman who was rescued from a stalled car just seconds before a train smashed it. An off duty police officer and her husband pulled the woman from the car after she’d mistaken the tracks for a road, then screamed for help. (She walks with crutches.)
The officer said the unidentified rescuee was disappointed “That we didn’t get her pocketbook, but that’s life sometimes”
How self centered does one have to be, to be worrying about your purse, and not just being grateful some folks risked their own life to save yours?
How self-centred can people be? Save somebody’s life and get griped at?
Train crew will be having nightmares over this too. I think people don’t understand exactly what happens when car meets train. Car pretty much vaporises. Search Youtube for “car versus train”, “truck versus train”, “grade crossing accident” etc. Quite sobering.
There was an incident in this area a number of years ago where an older couple was in a car, and the driver drove around the lowered gate arm. The car was struck by one train going one direction, and then very soon after, another train going the other way. The battery from the car was ejected by one of the impacts, and actually flew dozens of feet through (IIRC) the window of a nearby apartment. Naturally, the couple didn’t survive.
As for the woman in the OP - lady, if you’re stupid/prematurely senile enough to think a train track is a road, only your car and purse being pulverized is more than you deserve. Those train engineers tend to suffer from PTSD for years from sights like that, with their train bearing down and being unable to do anything.
Many years ago, my aunt was walking beside the train tracks on her way to school and she was hit by a log train–specifically the ‘arm’ of a log car. Fortunately for her, the train was going very slowly as it was just coming from the mill, so she was just thrown several feet and scared shitless. The train dudes completely freaked out, thinking that they had killed her (the guy on the last car saw her go flying). They probably still have nightmares it.
People in shock do and say weird things, based around what reality was supposed to be rather than what it actually is. Relatives of mine were in a crash on the London Underground, while travelling to Heathrow - after trying (and failing) to reach the trapped and dying driver, using suitcases to smash open doors, being walked down the track to the nearest station, my aunt started to try and hail a taxi to get them to the airport on time. While one of her kids was in an ambulance.
The radio news story I heard on the crash day said that she had been talking on her cell tel and turned off the road and stopped to continue the phone con safely. She did not realize that she had turned onto the tracks. It was dark. She then got stuck on the railroad crosstrack ties.
:dubious: RR tracks feel different than road-even with those neat, flush metal plates. Plus, what about signs and lights? I feel for the woman and don’t think she “deserved” to get hit because of her mistake, but how do you not know you’re on RR tracks?
It is possible that the driver was genuinely angry that the her saviors did not spend the time to go rummaging through her car for her purse.
It is also possible that the woman was so flustered at having demonstrated such utter stupidity as to almost get herself killed that she was having an adrenaline rush and said things that she did not mean.
In addition, the Mineola LIRR station is well lit around the clock – it is in the downtown area of a midsize town, and there’s a hospital right behind the station. The tracks are fenced off except for the crossings and the trains blow heir horns about 1000 billion decibels when nearing and passing through the station.
Indeed. Sometimes after a terrifying brush with death, people fixate on silly minutiae. When I was a child, I had a serious horseback accident that cracked my head open, requiring 55 stitches and a transfusion. On the way to the hospital, all I could think of or talk about was the sad fact that my new yellow sweatshirt had been ruined by all the blood. This wasn’t because I was that vain about fashion; I think that my mind just couldn’t deal with the scary reality, so it focused on fretting about something minor.
About this time last year, a girl got stuck on the tracks by my boyfriend’s house with the train coming around the relatively blind corner - I stopped the train while the guys pushed her car out of the way. (Any idea how hard it is to move a really stuck car with the footing you get from those cinder things?) Anyway, the weird thing is, the girl didn’t look like she had any intention of, say, getting out of the car. The train stopped, I dunno, maybe 30 feet from the car. It was close enough that I was screaming at the guys to give up and run toward the train. I honestly think if we weren’t there and the driver didn’t see her that she’d have sat there until it hit her, like a deer or a rabbit or something. You never know how you’re going to react under pressure like that, and you shouldn’t judge a person by what they say or do then, I don’t think. I’m sure she never thought she’d be dumb enough not to even open the damned door and get ready to run, but there it is.