01/31/2008

Mich. officer saves train from derailing

The Associated Press

BUENA VISTA TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Stopping cars is routine for Officer Jason Hendricks.

Stopping trains before they come to a gap in the tracks is a different story.

Hendricks was on routine patrol in Saginaw County's Buena Vista Township on Wednesday when he crossed some railroad tracks and spotted something that didn't look right.

Sergeant Sean Waterman says Hendricks backed up to check it out and saw six feet of track missing. An eastbound train, meanwhile, was approaching.

Waterman says Hendricks called dispatchers and told them, "Stop that train!"

The Saginaw News says the 40-car train squealed to a halt about 50 yards from the missing track. Waterman says the engineers told Hendricks they almost certainly would have derailed.

Officials believe a snowplow may have knocked the section of track loose.

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