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Witness says deadly Brookfield train crash 'looked unreal, like a movie'

Posted at 9:47 PM, Feb 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-18 23:09:24-05

BROOKFIELD, Wis. — A witness said the car involved in a fatal crash with an Amtrak train went around railroad gates and flashing lights in Brookfield Monday.

Brookfield Police said the driver, a 70-year-old man, died in the crash.

Damion Gray said he saw the whole crash happen as he was heading into work just after 4 p.m. He got stopped in his car at the railroad crossing near Brookfield and River Roads. Gray said he and others stopped their cars but one driver did not.

“The railroad crossing sticks were down and he just drove like around them into the barriers. It happened so quick,” Gray said.

According to the witness, the man was a few cars behind the ones that were stopped. He went around those cars first then the cross gate.

“I heard the horn as usual as they came across the tracks,” said Gray.

Brookfield Police said the man died at the scene. The Amtrak train was heading to Seattle with 193 passengers. No one inside the train was hurt.

Gray said he still cannot believe what he witnessed it’s been hard making it through his shift and not tearing up.

“I stood in shock for about 5 minutes. It happened so fast it looked unreal, like a movie or something. I am used to seeing it on TV but not in real life,” Gray said. “I never saw anything like that."

Brookfield Police said they are not releasing the name of the victim until family has been notified.